When Chancellor Alistair Darling revealed the 2009 Budget in April, yet another blow was dealt to the land-based bingo industry in the UK, with the bingo duty tax being increased from 15% to 22%.
The sector of the gaming industry to see an increase in tax in this year’s budget was Bingo with all other gaming and betting establishments including online bingo sites remaining at the 15% tax rate.
The bingo industry in the UK faces an annual increase of nearly £33 million in taxes alone, which will have an adverse effect on the 592 bingo clubs that are scattered all around the UK considering that many of the bingo clubs are already on the verge of closing down.
This year, Mecca Bingo, one of the popular bingo clubs in the UK is itself going to face extra costs of £11 million due to the tax increase.
Bingo clubs in the UK are already facing a fair share of suffering with the national ban on smoking and the ban on higher value jackpot slot machines complying with regulations on gambling. Though the Bingo Association and bingo players and members of the industry had been campaigning for a reasonable tax rate before the budget, they were left disappointed with the increase tax of 22%.