Stakeholders against betting tax in Kenya

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Hassan Wario said this week that sports teams have nothing to lose from the new measure.

Betting companies expressed their opposition to the measure that the government of Kenya set to raise taxes in all categories to 50 percent.

Kenya.- As the Treasury CS Henry Rotich announced during the reading of the new fiscal year budget that the country will increase its gambling taxes to 50 percent in all categories, stakeholders expressed the discontent towards the proposal.

According to Daily Nation, Sports and Culture Cabinet Secretary Hassan Wario said this week that sports teams have nothing to lose from the new measure since the government confirmed that they would sponsor all local leagues through the Ministry. “You (betting companies) are making billions of shillings and throwing little money around and you are telling us not to tax you. We are going to tax you for as long as you are in Kenya,” he said. Ggaming taxes were set at 15 percent, whilst lottery was under a 12 percent and betting 7.5 percent. All of them were raised to 50 percent, and the money obtained will go directly to a sports fund to support the development of the market, culture and arts.

Ambrose Rachier, Premier League chief executive officer, said that it is true that betting companies have grown exponentially in the last three years, but they also helped clubs financially. “It is time to rethink the proposal tabled during the budget reading because that increase in tax is detrimental and could have devastating effects on the industry,” he added.

Moreover, Sofapaka chairman Elly Kalekwa said that “the proposal to raise betting tax is almost 600 per cent increase in the current situation,” and that this proposal could kill the entire industry. “Yet these betting companies have ad continue to do so much for local sports. I urge the people responsible to reject this proposal for the good of the industry,” he concluded.