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HK racing chief calls for axe on betting duty

Wong stated that he was in favour of abolishing the 14 per cent duty in the long term, with taxation to come on profits instead. He believes the initiative would help arrest a 20 per cent decline in this revenue over the last four years. The move would effectively outlaw online betting sites but Wong conceded that it was unlikely to wipe out internet gambling.
“You have to plug the loopholes,” he said. “We’re haemorrhaging badly and the government has to draw a line and help sole this problem. We can’t compete with the internet sites because of the 14 per cent tax and our charity. Scrapping this duty would create a more level playing field, without which we just won’t have a ghost of a chance.”
Estimates place the number of online betting sites in the region at between 500 and 700, a figure that is increasing daily. According to internet monitor, NetValue, 41 per cent of Hong Kong Web users visited a gambling site in December last year – double the number from the previous June.