After a revision of its tentative schedule, Spain has announced it will proceed with licensing the country’s gambling market in June 2012. After backpedaling authorities reached a consensus stating all prospective companies would be forced to completely pay off all back taxes in order to submit applications. This differs from the original condition of only having to pay taxes existing since June 2011, when legislation came in to effect.
All applicants were assessed by the Bureau of Fraud Investigation in regard to tax liabilities as far back as 2008. Several notable applicants, including Bwin.Party, Sportingbet, and Pokerstars, returned projected amounts of back taxes to the tune of €60m, €50m, and €200m respectively.
Before being accepted into the market Bwin.Party will be obligated to pay Spanish taxes on any winnings in the past paid to players based in Spain.
A self-assessment of owed back taxes put Bwin.Party’s estimated debt closer to €33.6m, with €25.6m resulting from taxes and the other €8m as surcharges. Similar assessments are presumed to have been carried out by other license applicants. Now that Bwin has confirmed the decision to make this payment, Spain’s gambling market may soon see the addition of Bwin Sports, Poker, and Casino software.