The UK Bingo Association and What They Do
Recently social networking giant announced that it would offer real money social bingo games in the UK. Facebook representatives said that the UK was chosen for the launch because of its mature and regulated online gaming market. In 2005 the gambling commission was created and since then British online bingo players have enjoyed safe and secure online bingo games. Bingo is such a large industry in the UK that there is a Bingo Association representing the interest of bingo operators throughout the country. The UK Bingo Association was formed following the merger of the British Bingo Operators' Association and the Bingo Association of Great Britain.
As their website points out bingo is a unique part of the gaming industry and at the soft end of the gambling spectrum. On their website the Association says their mission is "to represent the industry, and to aid and inform sector operation and development." In recent years the bingo association has been dealing with tax issues. In the UK bingo is taxed at 22% while all other forms of gambling are taxed at 15% and the association rightfully considers this discriminatory. The British land based bingo industry has also been struggling with high fees and taxes for slot machines and local license fees have doubled and even tripled in some cities.
In July 2012 the Culture Media and Sport Select Committee investigating The Gambling Act 2005 published a report titled "The Gambling Act 2005: A bet worth taking?" In the report the DCMS acknowledges that bingo is a soft form of gambling and said that bingo should be taxed in line with other forms of gambling. An earlier 2001 report said that bingo clubs should be maintained as social, soft gambling, environments. The bingo association helps bingo operators, players and online bingo sites to keep up to date on issues facing and affecting the bingo industry.
This year the UK bingo association lobbied heavily for a 'point of consumption tax' to be placed on transactions made by UK residents at offshore bingo sites. The association believes that offshore bingo operators licensed in other countries enjoy an unfair tax advantage over sites licensed in the UK. The UK bingo association has done a stellar job of looking after the interests of players and bingo operators in the UK. Hopefully they will continue their good work well into the future.
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