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Halfon campaigning for the Bingo Clubs

Politics / Fri 17th Jan 2014 at 12:08pm

HARLOW MP, Robert Halfon has pledged to campaign for a fair deal for bingo clubs.

Mr Halfon said:

“I’m campaigning for a fair deal for Bingo Clubs.

bingoInexplicably, bingo clubs are currently subject to a Gross Profit Tax of 20%, whereas other forms of gambling are only taxed at 15%. This is despite Bingo being a much more community orientated event that provides comfort to millions of people up and down our country. The Mecca Bingo in Harlow for example, has 40,000 members.

This punitive tax is causing many Bingo Clubs to close every year, all over England and that is why I am urging the Government to reduce Bingo duty and ensure a level playing field.

A tax cut to 15% would cost the Treasury between £20-25 million, but this money would easily be recouped by the extra £300 million they would receive from taxing online gambling.

The Sun has reported on this issue today and just yesterday, I tabled an Early Day Motion in the House of Commons that reads:

…this House acknowledges that, despite being recognised as a soft form of gambling that plays an important social role within many local communities in the UK, bingo is subject to a gross profits tax of 20 per cent, as opposed to the 15 per cent charged on other forms of gambling; notes that with no recoverable VAT on costs, bingo duty is equivalent to the industry paying a VAT rate of 32 per cent; further notes that this is significantly more than other high street businesses; and welcomes the Bingo Association’s Boost Bingo Campaign that will be running between 17 January to 26 February 2014, asking for a level playing field, so that the industry can continue to invest in people, premises and product.

You can also see this Motion on the parliament.uk website HERE: www.parliament.uk/edm/2013-14/959

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