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Economics of Gambling in Slovenia

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Slovenia’s Office for Gaming Supervision is responsible for the supervision of standard and non-standard gaming activities included in the Gaming Act and in other legislation. According to Loterija Slovenia, there is approximately 53 Euro per capita spent per year on games of chance (casino sector not included)

GAMING SECTOR ANALYSIS

Lotteries

The Slovenian legislation allows only two operators to organise classical games of chance on Slovenian territory. They are Loterija Slovenije d.d. (The Lottery of Slovenia), and Športna loterija d.d. (the Sports Lottery). There are no small and medium sized enterprises in the Slovenia national lottery sector.

The leading game in Loterija Slovenije is Loto, which on average represents an 80 per cent share in the turnover structure. In longer subsequent transfers for the capital win, payments start to increase dramatically and, consequently also the attraction of prizes, which indirectly increases both the turnover and the market share. The Prize Fund equals about 50 % and is not going to change in the next few years.

In the next five year period, it is expected that the market share of Loterija Slovenije and Športna loterija d.d. will remain stable at the level of approximately 70 percent and 30 percent respectively.

Loterija Slovenije GGR was approximately 8.5 billion SIT (€35.5 million) in 2004.

In line with Article 27 of the Value Added Tax Act, the games of chance are exempt from the VAT liability. As regards the costs of organising classical games of chance, the Lottery of Slovenia is subject to a 20% VAT. In 2004, the amount of the Value Added Tax paid was €60,000.

The games of chance operators are subject to the following taxes:

– 5% tax on games of chance; the taxable basis being the value of payments received for the participation in a classical game of chance, reduced by the value of prizes paid out (GGR);

– 15% tax on paid out prizes exceeding the value of €190, which is 45,607 SIT (for the year 2005, since the basis changes from year to year); it is settled by the prize receiver and deducted upon the payment of prize to the municipality of the prize winner’s permanent residence. The prize is not included in the tax return. Loterija Slovenije pay the prizes in a single amount;

– 25-30% concession (license fee) on the profit gained, depending on the game, on money staked minus payouts (GGR)

– corporation tax at the rate 25% on profits

All legal operators which obtain a state license have to pay a concession fee. Športna loterija d.d have 5 licenses, one per each game (four lottery games licenses and one sports betting license.) Concession fee is paid monthly.

Loterija Slovenije organises classical games of chance based on a concession granted by the Government of the Republic of Slovenia and has a concession agreement signed with the Ministry of Finance. Upon the issue of a new concession agreement, the company pays the Ministry of finance a tax equalling €1,250, and for the extension of the concession agreement €625. It has a concession for the following groups of games: number lotteries, instant games and bingos. In total, Loterija Slovenije was granted nine concessions.

Lottery operators do not have to pay any contributions to good causes. However, a concession fee, which they pay to the state, is distributed among two foundations: sports and invalid-humanitarian foundation in Slovenia, thus it goes entirely for good purposes.

Sportna Loterija only uses authorised sales points, the numbers of which are indicated below, and doesn’t have its own sales network. Therefore, it is unclear how much indirect employment it induces.

Sportna Loterija was the first lottery operator to introduce Mobile Entertainment Platform (MEP), which is a multichannel gaming platform for mobile ‘phones that operates through GSM voice mode. MEP was launched in February 2002.

In Slovenia, there is no comprehensive statistics on problem gambling. In fact, the population of Slovenia spend €53 EUR per capita/per year on games of chance (excluding the casino sector.)

Casino Gaming

Slovenia has a total of 12 casinos, and all but are two located in border towns, to cater in particular to Italian and Austrian customers. The nation’s two largest casinos are both located in Nova Gorica, on the Italian border.

The leading casino operator in Slovenia is the state-owned company HIT d.d. The group currently has five properties, including the largest three in Slovenia. HIT d.d.’s two largest casino hotel properties are Perla and Park in Nova Gorica, which cater specifically to the Italian market. In late 2005, HIT announced exploration of a new SIT 150 billion (€600 million) property in Nova Gorica in partnership with the American company Harrah’s that would include at least 30 tables and as many as 1,000 gaming machines. HIT currently accounts for approximately 80% of Slovenia total casino GGR. Of the 1.5 million visitors that the HIT casinos attract each year, nearly 90% come from outside Slovenia. (Source: GBGC Report.)

In 2004, there were 3,068 slots machines operating in 13 casinos, the newest casino having opened in Kobaritz, near the Italian border.

Under current law, all Slovenian casinos are mainly state-owned. Concessions are granted by the Slovene Government through the State Office of Gaming Supervision (part of the Ministry of Finance) of up to 10 years to suitably qualified organisations.

Casino taxes in Slovenia are approximately 25% of GGR for table games and 35% for gaming machines. However, almost 50% of casino income is tax: levy tax to the state; and 5% to 20% for slots depending on win; for other games there is a 5% flat rate. Casinos are exempt from VAT (8,5% or 20%). Of the concession tax, 47,8% goes to the region, 47,8% goes to the state, 2,2% to charities, and 2,2% to the development of sports.

Entertainment and alcohol are permitted in the casino properties. Foreign ownership of casinos is not prohibited for entities from the EU.

Machine Gambling Outside Casinos

The 1995 Gaming Act permitted bars, restaurants and other catering facilities to offer gaming machines, but this changed in 2001. The new law permits only casinos and the newly established gaming halls to offer gaming machines. Each gaming hall, which is required to be located in a designated tourist area, may operate between 50 and 200 devices. In 2005, there were 31 gaming halls that operate approximately 2600 gaming machines. In 2004, there were 2085 slot machines in 27 operating gaming saloons in Slovenia. All slot machines are connected via network to the Office for Gaming Supervision that is a part of the Ministry of Finance for tax regulation purposes.

Betting

Športna loterija d.d uses one of its five licenses to organise sports betting.

Bingo

Loterija Slovenije runs bingo games in Slovenia. No other information could be found or was supplied to the researchers regarding the financial performance of bingos in Slovenia.

© European Union

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