Greece seeks to revamp its gambling laws for foreign investment

The Hellenic Parliament is expected to pass a series of gambling amendments related to VLTs provisions and land-based casino licensing.

Last October, Greek news sources reported that the Syriza government had tabled new reforms on industry taxes, licensing arrangements and games provisions, in order to make its national market more attractive to foreign operators.

Parliament further seeks to amend existing ‘monopoly structured’ contracts between the state and gambling firm OPAP in-relation to video-lottery-terminals (VLTs).

Key to Syriza industry growth plans is the reduction of Greece’s current gambling ‘turnover tax’ set at 30-37% dependent on vertical.

Greek news sources report that government ministers are pushing for a casino tax reduction to 22%, with a view of incentivising industry stakeholders to invest in Greek facilities.

Furthermore, the Greek government would look to abolish the unpopular ‘entrance fee’ charge placed on casino consumers.

Backing casino and gambling reforms, Syriza states that it wants to invite international operators to develop high-quality gambling venues attractive to its growing number of tourists (projected 30 million by 2018).

The Greek government currently seeks to issue new casino operator licenses for its jurisdictions of Elliniko (old Athens airport), and the islands of Crete and Mykonos.

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