It will also affect the Greek government’s plans to raise money through the sale of part of its share in OPAP. In 2011 profit from OPAP’s gambling income was 537.5 million euros and analysts predict that the new tax at 30 per cent could reduce this profit by as much as almost 50 per cent. OPAP has the monopoly on gambling in Greece so this proposed increase in tax has been announced before the European Court of Justice releases a ruling as to whether it can keep this monopoly.
As a result of the bail outs it has received and under agreements with the International Monetary Fund and the European Union, the Greek government must raise 50 billion euros by 2020. In order to fulfil its obligations it has embarked on a major privatisation programme. The proposed sale of OPAP by the end of 2012 is part of this plan but experts believe that the sale should not take place too soon as the new 30 per cent tax has already affected share prices.