Gambling Revenue in Ireland

Gambling is a massive industry in every part of the world, but it’s not legal everywhere. The countries that have legalised gambling, generally see high revenue injections from the industry.

Gambling was legalised in Ireland for both licensed offshore casinos and regulated physical gambling. The laws have been allowing pro-gambling for many years and it’s become an important industry with citizens spending millions on games each year.

Gambling is an integral part of the Irish culture and it’s interesting to note that here in Ireland physical casinos are illegal. Gambling is done mainly on offshore casinos, lotteries and gambling machines. Many people enjoy betting on horse racing or they go to private clubs for gambling fun.

Who Regulates Gambling in Ireland?

Registered casinos are allowed to operate in Ireland, but the law heavily regulates their activities. The Department of Justice and Equality issues certificates of fitness for land-based and offshore casinos. The DOJE also monitors compliance and is responsible for anti-money laundering activities.

The Irish Tax Authority issues licenses to casinos and offshore casinos, gaming machines and other gambling institutions and equipment. The Tax Authority also ensures that the companies pay the appropriate tax and licensing fees, for both land-based and offshore casinos.

The police force has the jurisdiction to issue licenses to small local lotteries and some bookmakers.

All offshore casinos have to carry licenses from authorities such as the UK Gaming Commission or the Gibraltar Gaming Authority.

Taxes in Irish Gambling

A big draw for Irish gamblers is that you don’t have to pay tax on winnings. All winnings from gambling activities are tax-free. The onus is on the company to pay the tax on all revenue it receives.

The downside to the tax laws in Ireland is that it prohibits you from writing off any of your losses.

Regardless of whether you can write off losses, it’s not a surprise that a large part of the government income is from gambling activities.

Gambling tax is 2% of all bets placed and bookies only have to pay 1%. Companies tax is at 12% of profits.

Revenue of Land-Based Gambling

If you look in terms of Gross Gambling Revenue, the total income from land-based gambling was €1.7 Billion in 2019. Land-based gambling took a slight hit in 2020, with global conditions making access to machines, clubs and sporting events challenging.

Offshore Casinos

Revenue from offshore casinos is estimated at around €7.5 Billion. The market became more popular with people being cooped up at home. It provided Irish citizens with a sense of escape and allowed them to have fun while winning some money.

Slots are one of the most popular online casino games. It showed an annual increase of 25% from 2019 to 2020.

There are thousands of slots to choose from and many providers offer progressive jackpots. Here you have plenty of chances to win and it’s fun to do so. Most slots also carry a return-to player rate of 96% and more, which makes the game even more attractive.

What Does the Future Hold?

The industry is set to grow even more in coming years, as more and more people realise that it’s a fun pastime and it carries the potential to win plenty of tax-free money.

Until the end of 2020, the Irish government has issued around 32 licenses to various casinos and machines per year. 82% of people have migrated to online casinos, and this number is expected to grow.

There currently isn’t a big variety of offshore casinos that are approved in Ireland, but that number is also set to increase, as offshore casinos start to comply with the laws in Ireland.

Can People Become Rich Through Gambling?

It doesn’t happen often, but every now and then, someone wins enough to become rich. The key to becoming rich through gambling is to make sure that you invest your winnings. If you do hit the jackpot, don’t reinvest all the money back to gambling.

Most people who get rich from gambling in Ireland did so playing poker.

Take Away

Irish gambling isn’t big compared to the global industry, but it’s such a big part of the culture that it’s likely bound to grow. As more and more offshore casinos become available in Ireland, those who enjoy variety in gaming and love slots will migrate over to these casinos.

Having said that, land-based gambling will stay popular, as the Irish bet on the horses, football and Gaelic football, which is often not found with online bookmakers. Regardless of where the Irish play, it has an impact on the economy.




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