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Two important Updates

Article authored by Njord Law Firm

Our Estonia contributor, Njord Law Firm, have provided two pertinent updates from the country. 

Gambling Taxes to Increase
The first important update from Estonia is that the new government that took seat some weeks ago following the March parliamentary elections in Estonia presented in their coalition agreement that there will be an increase in gambling tax in the years to come. A draft law has been prepared. According to this, the gambling tax for casino and sports betting will increase in two steps.

  • The first step is from 2024 when the tax will increase from 5% to 6%.
  • The next step two years later (as from 2026) from 6% to 7%.

In addition, there will be changes to the tax on lotteries (from today’s 18% to 22%) and the tax on gaming tables will increase some 10% (from EUR 1278,23 per table to EUR 1,496 per table). As for the tax on gaming machines, the suggested change is purely rounding up, from EUR 31.95 to EUR 32.

Review of Marketing Activities
The second piece of news from Estonia comes from the Estonian Consumer Protection Authority that made supervision on ads for games and betting. The Estonian Consumer Protection Authority (Est: Tarbijakaitse ja Tehnilise Järelevalve Amet, “TTJA“) decided to check the marketing activities of 19 companies that holds an Estonian gambling license during the month of April. Out of the checked companies, the TTJA identified that 15 had marketing campaigns on-going. All in all, the TTJA found 152 ads out of which 150(!) that were in breach of the Estonian Marketing Act. Some ads contained multiple breaches.  

In the statistics published on 11 May 2023, the TTJA shows that among the 150 faulty ads were 26 cases of totally prohibited marketing, 128 cases of non-compliant warnings about gambling addiction and 133 cases of breaches against the rule that ads for gambling cannot contain an invitation to play or show benefits from playing.  

The TTJA says that they have initiated supervisory proceedings against the licence holders for the recorded breaches.  

According to the Estonian Gambling Act § 30 (1) 5, the regulator EMTA (the Estonian Tax Board) has the right to revoke an operating permit if the gambling organiser has repeatedly violated the regulations established for gambling advertisement.