Millions in tax revenue are lost each year to unregulated foreign and domestic online casinos in Latvia.
Mr. Marcinkevics has been pressuring the government to adopt a legal framework to regulate, license and tax internet casinos and online bingo games in Latvia and has been making great progress.
According to the latest numbers, Latvia missed out on several million lats in much needed tax revenue last year alone.
The Business Association wants the government to revise Latvian gambling laws and set a 5% tax on the casino’s profit in order for the country to become an attractive location for European online gambling conglomerates.
“In this case, both foreign and local online gaming companies, which currently provide online gambling illegally would be able to register, making my approach a cost-effective means of providing legal gambling on the Internet,” says Marcinkevics.
The proposed Latvian gambling framework as Mr. Marcinkevics envisions it would also block all financial transaction between Latvian financial institutions and all online gambling companies who do not have an online gambling license.
“The new gambling will ensure that the Latvian people would be blocked from transferring money to illegal gambling websites. It will be impossible to even access unlicensed gambling website from Latvia after we block those websites”, said Marcinkevics.
In 2010, gambling and the lottery’s net turnover amounted to 88.063 million lats. Banking transactions to illegal online casinos and lotteries was 12.4 million which was completely untaxed, 14% by net sales.
“Currently, the state budget revenues from Internet gambling is a zero,” says Marcinkevics.
These proposals are currently being incorporated into the new Latvian Gaming and Lotteries Act.