Further to the financial incentives announced by the Maltese Government last week, the Malta Gaming Authority (‘MGA’) issued a communication to gaming companies regarding financial aid which may be applicable to them.
Postponement of Tax Payment for Certain Beneficiaries
The MGA confirmed that both online and land-based gaming companies are eligible for the postponement of payment of certain taxes if such companies suffer a significant downturn in their turnover due to economic constraints resulting from COVID-19, including suffering cash flow difficulties.
The postponement covers a two-month extension to enterprises, including self-employed, to pay Provisional Tax, VAT, maternity fund payments and National Insurance Contribution on salaries for taxes owed till end of April. Nevertheless, any documents and returns must still be submitted in time.
The MGA also warned that companies and self-employed persons not adversely effected, should continued to operate in accordance with good business management standards including paying taxes. Moreover, gaming companies and self-employed persons who failed to comply with their tax obligations falling due by the 31st December 2019 cannot benefit from such postponement.
To benefit from such scheme, one must apply with the Malta Enterprise by not later than the 15th April 2020.
Gaming companies may also benefit from financial support when offering teleworking solutions, which support is limited to up to five hundred Euros (€500) per teleworking agreement and four thousand Euros (€4,000) per undertaking. This call is eligible for costs incurred between 1st March and 30th March 2020.
Closure of Land Based Gaming Establishments
In accordance with legal notice 76 of 2020, Closure of Places Open to the Public Order, the Superintendent of Public Health has ordered the closure of a number of public places including controlled gaming premises, bingo halls, casinos, gaming parlours, lotto booths and betting shops. Establishments which do not observe this regulation may face fines.
Update written by Dr Bernice Saliba
This article is not intended to impart legal advice and readers are asked to seek verification of statements made, from an advocate or law firm, before acting on them.