NZ to Impose Point-of-Consumption Tax

In New Zealand’s gambling market, many local operators are concerned about losing business to international companies. To address these concerns and help level the playing field, the government aims to impose a point-of-consumption tax on gaming operators from around the world who offer their services to Kiwi players.

The Department of Internal Affairs published ‘Proposals to Amend the Racing Act 2003’ – a document that suggests a number of methods that would allow members of the New Zealand Racing Board to become more competitive with gambling companies from offshore locations. One of the measures that will make the most difference is the point-of-consumption tax, which will require international operators to pay 2% on all profits generated by players in New Zealand.

This would not only have significant benefits for local gaming operators; it would also benefit the local economy. By charging 2% on gaming profits, the New Zealand government could stand to earn $10 million in additional tax earnings every year. However, the success of such a tax will depend on how well the measure is enforced and how willing offshore operators are to comply.

“Revenue from the fee could be used to benefit racing and sport in New Zealand and contribute to the funding available to provide problem gambling services,” reads a statement from the document.

The Department of Internal Affairs has also suggested a number of other amendments that would make Kiwi operators more competitive with international firms. These include:

  • Allowing NZRB operators to take live bets during a race, and removing the restriction that bets can only be placed before events
  • Allowing NZRB operators to offer bets that are not represented by National Sports Organisations
  • Allowing the NZRB to include novelty betting services

Members of the public and gaming industry in New Zealand are invited to comment on these proposals. The deadline for submissions is May 27, 2016. Submissions can be emailed to offshorebetting@dia.govt.nz, or posted to:

Safer Communities Policy Team
Policy Group
Department of Internal Affairs
PO Box 805
Wellington 6140

This is a very important issue to the New Zealand gambling market, as local operators continue to lose out on valuable revenue to offshore betting operators. These recommendations could certainly help local bookmakers recover some business and profits from players across the country, and increase gaming tax revenue which would ultimately benefit the community at large.

Image via: Ken Teegardin

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