Queensland Raising Gambling Taxes Within the State

Queensland is raising gambling taxes by five per cent and it is the states horse racing industry that will benefit the most.

Queensland is increasing gambling taxes across the board with Queensland’s racing industry reaping the benefits. Treasurer and Minister for Trade and Investment, Cameron Dick, says the changes will assist the horse racing industry which plays an important role in regional communities.

“There are 125 racing clubs across Queensland. For 85 of those clubs, a race meeting is the biggest or second-biggest event in their community each year. For many of those clubs, a race meeting is a once-a-year event that is an unparalleled opportunity for people to get together. Our government recognises how important those gatherings are to the social fabric of Queensland, and today’s announcement will help them thrive into the future.”

The announcement Dick alludes to is the increasing of gambling taxes within the state. Point of consumption tax is increasing from 15% to 20%. In addition, operators are on the hook for paying tax on free bets and bonus bets.

Dick is also reallocating the state’s gambling taxes revenue. Racing Queensland, the racing regulator in the state, previously received 35% of the total gambling taxes. However, changes to the law means it is receiving 80% of that revenue.

Gambling Taxes Hike Gives Racing Industry Stability

Dick explained how the increased in gambling taxes share moves Racing Queensland into a single funding stream.

“At present, a lot of the funding that goes to the racing industry is in the form of short-term government funding programs. Now the industry will have the certainty of knowing they will get a least 80% of the betting tax, and if the size of the pie grows, so too will their share. The significant growth in online betting over the last few years has led to a very different wagering market in Queensland and we need to adapt.”

“The Palaszczuk Government is levelling the playing field for all wagering operators and ensuring that organisations profiting from Queensland’s thriving racing industry are investing in its future too.”

Tabcorp No Longer Holds Exclusivity of Sponsorships

It is not only gambling taxes rules that are changing in Queensland because Tabcorp is losing its sponsorship exclusivity. This applies to on-course sponsorship and advertising rights.

Ignazia Graziella “Grace” Grace is the minister of racing for Queensland. She explained what the new rules mean, in addition to the generous donation from Tabcorp. The generation ends the legal proceedings Racing Queensland levied on Tabcorp in 2019.

“While Tabcorp will still offer on-course betting services and retain retail exclusivity, its on-course sponsorship and advertising exclusivity will end once these changes take effect. This means race clubs across Queensland have opportunities to enter into new sponsorship agreements with other wagering service providers. Other benefits of the agreement include a further injection of $50 million from Tabcorp to cater for future racing infrastructure needs, and a one-off payment of $100 million to Racing Queensland.”

Tabcorp Managing Director and CEO Adam Rytenskild welcomed the new gambling taxes and rules.

“Online betting has changed the market substantially since TAB’s licences were issued. On a relative basis, TAB Currently pays double the fees to the local racing industries compared to other wagering operators. Going forward we will all pay the same in Queensland. I commend the Queensland Government for delivering fair and much needed reforms that bring the wagering market into line with the modern economy.”

Who Pays For the Increases?

While operators are footing the bill of increased gambling taxes, the money must come from somewhere. A five per cent increase is quite substantial, so operators will likely try to claw some of it back. How do they do that? Through their customers.

Dick claims this is not a tax on bettors but on the online betting operators themselves. However, it is likely the customers suffer through reduced promotions and possibly lower odds.