he 15 percent tax on NGR attributed to South Australian punters makes the province the first in Australia to target gambling companies based on where the wager is made rather than where the operator is licensed and located.
Provincial Treasurer Tom Koutsantonis said the tax would apply to a wide range of online and terrestrial wagering on horse, harness and greyhound racing, and other sports such as AFL and soccer, and even prop bets on elections and entertainment awards, and would be effective from July 1, 2017.
“The betting industry is rapidly changing and our tax regime needs to change with it,” Koutsantonis said.”If betting companies are making profits from South Australian punters they should be paying tax in South Australia, not in whichever jurisdiction their head office and servers happen to be located.”
He added that the new tax will accompany the budget bills into Parliament, and would include a tax-free threshold of A$150,000 for betting companies.
The first A$500,000 raised each year will be contributed to the Gamblers Rehabilitation Fund, the first time the betting industry has contributed to the fund.
Ross Womersley, executive director of the South Australian Council of Social Service, commented:
“We released a report a week ago that identified there was a major hole in the revenue bucket relating to gambling taxes.
“One of the things we identified is that with the rise of sports betting in Australia, and online betting, lots of the taxation related to that betting was paid in other jurisdictions – effectively tax havens – in particular, the Northern Territory and Norfolk Island, both of which have very preferential arrangements for taxation.”
The Opposition said it was positively inclined to support the measure if it meant closing a tax loophole.