Originally Posted by davmcg
If you remember the original govt plan was to insist on UK regulation for any operator offering services for UK consumers. It seems that for some reason they are trying to introduce this new tax regime independently of that. So apparently they will collect tax and offer no consumer protection or anything else in return.
That is overstating it a bit. The UK has allowed foreign operators from the white list to operate and advertise in the UK. That list includes all EU countries and countries with an EU connection but not full membership. In effect it was everybody Gibraltar, Malta, Isle of Mann, Channel Islands (and in passing, sadly, Kahnawake).
The 2005 Gambling Act was meant to make the UK the most desirable location for online gambling sites to locate. As it happened Gordon Brown got to take over and impose a tax level that made this impossible. now the Tory coalition is trying to take that same pretty steep tax and impose it globally by claiming ownership of UK gamblers revenues.
This new regime may well make it better to be based in the UK as there would be no tax on non UK resident produced revenues and being overseas would still get the same hit on UK based customers. It might get more properly regulated sites as it makes the UK a bit better as a tax base. This would help with consumer protection.
You are right though, the UK will be sending a tax bill to any gambling site offering services in the UK without offering proper consumer protection in the UK or elsewhere.
This may well be something we should comment upon - maybe it should be that foreign operators should need to get a "Gambling Commission Lite" license with things like guaranteed segregation of accounts, inspection to ensure games are fair before they are allowed to advertise to UK consumers.