The Economics of Casino Taxation

28 Pages Posted: 24 Apr 2006

See all articles by Hasret Benar Balcioglu

Hasret Benar Balcioglu

Cyprus International University

Glenn P. Jenkins

Queen's University - Department of Economics; Eastern Mediterranean University


In this paper, a model of the costs of a casino is developed that focuses on the implications for economic welfare of different taxation schemes for casinos. The situation being considered is in a country where casinos cater exclusively to foreign tourists. The goal of the country is to determine the maximum amount of taxes that can be extracted from the activities of this sector under different systems of taxation. When the price of gambling is set by regulation above its competitive level, the economic losses created by excessive investment in the sector can be reduced by taxation. A turnover tax on the amount gambled can maximize both tax revenue and the economic welfare of the country. Due administrative constraints, a number of countries rely on the taxation of the casinos' fixed assets or a combination of a turnover tax and a tax on fixed costs. The model is applied to the situation in North Cyprus. The annual economic efficiency loss from its poorly designed tax policies on casino gambling is estimated to be about 0.5 percent of GDP.

Keywords: Casino, taxation, gambling, tourism, economic benefit

JEL Classification: H21, H32, H27

Suggested Citation

Balcioglu, Hasret Benar and Jenkins, Glenn P., The Economics of Casino Taxation. Applied Economics, 2006, Available at SSRN:

Hasret Benar Balcioglu (Contact Author)

Cyprus International University ( email )

Nicosia, Via Mersin-10


Glenn P. Jenkins

Queen's University - Department of Economics ( email )

99 University Avenue
Kingston K7L 3N6, Ontario
Canada K7L 3N6
613 533 6556 (Phone)
613 533 6818 (Fax)

Eastern Mediterranean University

Gazimagusa, Mersin 10

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