BOS Reports Gambling Tax Hike Sparks Rise in Problem Gamblers

A research conducted by Copenhagen Economics (CE) and released by the Swedish Trade Association for Online Gambling (BOS) outlines the consequences of the upcoming increase in the gambling tax from 18% to 22%. According to CE’s study, there will be major changes in the gambling industry.

Shift Towards Unregulated Market

CE forecasts a decrease in the legal regulated license market’s share by 1.2 – 2.5 percentage points, leading to a corresponding surge in the unregulated gambling market.

The tax increase is expected to trigger 591 to 1,247 individuals developing gambling problems. The absence of statutory consumer protection in unlicensed gambling exacerbates this issue.

While the Ministry of Finance anticipates an annual revenue of SEK 539 million, CE estimates a much lower figure of SEK 214-399 million.

Gustaf Hoffstedt, Secretary General of BOS, emphasizes the need for a comprehensive overhaul of gambling policy. He urges, “At the price of a modest net addition to the treasury, the tax increase creates around one thousand new cases of people with gambling problems. Thus, gambling problems that would never have occurred without the increase in the gambling tax. The government should completely overhaul its gambling policy and instead protect and strengthen the legal gambling market, which offers the consumer the protection all gamblers should be able to enjoy.” 

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