Horse Racing: Betting

Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport written question – answered on 7th March 2018.

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Photo of Adam Afriyie Adam Afriyie Conservative, Windsor

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment he has made of the effect of the April 2017 reforms to the Horserace Betting Levy on (a) horse-racing and (b) the public purse.

Photo of Tracey Crouch Tracey Crouch The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport

In April 2017, the Government implemented reforms to the Horserace Betting Levy which made it a requirement for offshore operators to pay the Levy for the first time.

The Horserace Betting Levy Board, which collects the Levy, estimates that the reformed Levy will generate c.£85m in 2017/18. This would represent an increase of c.£20m compared to receipts from bookmakers in 2016/17 under the old system. The actual Levy yield for 2017/18 will only be known after the end of the financial year. Increased receipts from the Levy have already allowed an additional £9.7m of investment in grassroots prize money, contributing to record prize money of £160m in 2018.

The Levy is collected from bookmakers and distributed in line with the statutory purposes in support of horseracing, and so has no direct effect on the public purse.

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