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Uruguay to introduce online gambling ban, new taxes

Uruguay has passed a new law that will ban offshore online gaming websites from operating in the country and also introduce new taxes on state-approved gambling activities.

Last week, the Senate voted 30-6 in favour of the new ‘Accountability Law’ and Uruguayan President Tabaré Vázquez has this week signed the bill into law.

The legislation states that all forms of online poker and casino activities, as well as similar products, are “absolutely prohibited” in Uruguay via remote channels.

Monopoly La Banca de Quinielas national lottery will now be the only operator approved to operate online gambling in Uruguay, although this exception will only apply to sports betting activities.

However, the operator will face a new 0.75% tax on the gambling turnover made via approved casinos, gaming halls, racetracks, sports betting shops and its other related operations.

In addition, the legislation will hand new powers to the state to “adopt various preventive and sanctioning measures to prevent the proliferation” of online gambling.

The bill said that this could include “blocking of access to websites, financial frauds, as well as the prohibition of commercial communications, sponsorship and advertising of unauthorised games”.

 

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