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EU BYTES


makers in one country find justification to implement bans of this sort, what stops another country’s law-makers doing the same? So, what is new is that, for example, it has been confirmed that sponsorships of sports will be able to continue until the middle of this year. Be aware though that there have been complaints forwarded to the European Commission on this. Let’s see what that will bring.


VAT


The VAT Committee which was set up due to the VAT Directive has as a purpose the uniform application of the Directive’s provisions. As an advisory body made up of representatives of Member States and the European Commission, it cannot take legally binding decisions, but their decisions can result in legally binding implementing measures. In January, the Committee published quite a few recommendations for gambling-related services


which it had devised since its inception in 1977. For example, in 1980 guidelines were put forward on the application of VAT to slot machines. In 1993 Recommendations were put forward for “game packages” (software). Keep in mind the blurring of and increasing concerns regarding the difference between gaming and gambling in policy discourse. In 2003, games of chance and gambling games were targeted. Furthermore, in 2015… you get the point. Oh yes, I should mention that in parallel the European Commission has proposed a reform of the decision-making model for taxation. The Commission would like to see a move from unanimity in the Council to a qualified majority vote. Well, taxation has been quite a taboo subject at EU level for many Member States. So, this should be fun.


Greetings from Brussels


34 FEBRUARY 2019


Augustin Lazaroiu/Adobe Stock


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