Prov­ince rakes in R591m from gam­bling taxes

An­nual re­port in­di­cates casino and horse-rac­ing fig­ure 18.7% more than ex­pected

Cape Argus - - METRO - JA­SON FE­LIX ja­son.fe­lix@inl.co.za

CASINO and horse rac­ing taxes have added R591 mil­lion to the prov­ince’s cof­fers, even though a tougher eco­nomic cli­mate was ex­pected to drive down gam­bling ac­tiv­ity in the prov­ince.

The pro­vin­cial trea­sury and West­ern Cape Gam­bling and Rac­ing Board pre­sented its an­nual re­port in the Leg­is­la­ture yes­ter­day.

Ac­cord­ing to the re­port, the taxes re­ceived from gam­bling and horse rac­ing were 18.7% more than ex­pected.

The orig­i­nal tar­get for taxes from gam­bling was R498m. Casino taxes brought in R537m, while horse rac­ing brought in R53m.

The amend­ments to the costs and fees reg­u­la­tions were in line with an­nual in­fla­tion to all new li­cence ap­pli­ca­tions.

Chair­per­son of the gam­bling board David Lakay said for the past fi­nan­cial year the board had pro­cessed 8 354 li­cence ap­pli­ca­tions, con­ducted 1 227 as­sess­ments at li­cence hold­ers and de­lib­er­ated 12 dis­putes.

Lakay also said the board ini­ti­ated sev­eral re­spon­si­ble gam­bling en­gage­ments. “This was done with the li­cence hold­ers on their own re­spon­si­ble gam­bling ini­tia­tives, prac­tices and pre­ven­ta­tive mea­sures. We have also as­sisted pun­ters, who ei­ther iden­ti­fied them­selves or were iden­ti­fied by the in­dus­try as po­ten­tial prob­lem gam­blers.”

He said there were 49 cases of il­le­gal gam­bling. “Eigh­teen of these cases were pos­i­tive cases, re­sult­ing in the ar­rest of the al­leged guilty per­sons and the con­fis­ca­tion of de­vices. There were 31 in­ves­ti­ga­tions which had neg­a­tive re­sults. Go­ing for­ward there will be a dif­fer­ent ap­proach adopted by the board, which will ef­fec­tively re­duce the num­ber of in­ves­ti­ga­tions where the re­sults are likely to be neg­a­tive.”

Fi­nance MEC Ivan Meyer said there were suc­cesses, de­spite an eco­nomic en­vi­ron­ment that was in­creas­ingly volatile. “The econ­omy is char­ac­terised by un­cer­tainty, com­plex­ity and am­bi­gu­ity. The de­part­ment has suc­cess­fully de­liv­ered its un­der­tak­ing to adopt an in­te­grated work plan for pro­vin­cial and mu­nic­i­pal plan­ning, bud­get­ing and gov­er­nance and im­prove the in­te­gra­tion of bud­get plan­ning and pro­cure­ment.”

Meyer em­pha­sised the need for fis­cal dis­ci­pline across the gov­ern­ment. “Fis­cal con­sol­i­da­tion de­mands be­havioural change from all ac­tors in the fi­nan­cial gov­er­nance pipe­line. Our ob­jec­tive is to en­sure our ef­forts con­trib­ute in the cre­ation of pub­lic value.”

Pro­vin­cial trea­sury ac­count­ing of­fi­cer Zakariya Hoo­sain said there was no fruit­less or waste­ful ex­pen­di­ture, but there were chal­lenges within the sup­ply chain man­age­ment sec­tor.

“Sup­ply chain man­age­ment is not purely about pur­chas­ing sup­plies any­more, but is strate­gic sourc­ing which re­quires good prod­uct knowl­edge, re­search on com­modi­ties, pric­ing and an abil­ity to ne­go­ti­ate with ser­vice providers to achieve good value for money. The in­suf­fi­cient ca­pac­ity will be ad­dressed via an align­ment of the cur­rent struc­ture to the generic sup­ply chain man­age­ment struc­ture for chief fi­nan­cial of­fi­cers as de­ter­mined by Na­tional Trea­sury. In ad­di­tion, tools will be used to iden­tify in­di­vid­ual com­pe­ten­cies and train­ing needs for de­vel­op­ment pur­poses.”

Mean­while, Pre­mier He­len Zille said that at the core of the gov­ern­ment’s brand lied good fi­nan­cial gov­er­nance. “The qual­ity of our au­dits con­firms the high stan­dard of fi­nan­cial man­age­ment within the West­ern Cape pub­lic sec­tor. We thank our of­fi­cials at ev­ery level for their out­stand­ing com­mit­ment to in­tegrity and ser­vice de­liv­ery.”

The orig­i­nal tar­get for taxes from gam­bling was R498m. Casino taxes brought in R537m, while horse rac­ing brought in R53m

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