30.11.2018

Features of iGaming legislation in Eastern European countries

The market of gambling industry increase was predicted a long time ago. Experts based on the research made by the private company believe that the revenues of the global gambling market by 2021 will cross the mark of 90 billion Euros and the growth will be more than 15% in the period from 2017 to 2021. The expansion to the markets of Eastern Europe has become financially justified.

The high rate of the gambling industry development in Eastern Europe is scheduled from the late 90s. The collapse of the USSR and the weakening of the state control over the gambling market became one of the key factors contributing to the growth in demand for casinos in post-communist countries, such as Latvia, Estonia, Bulgaria, Poland, Lithuania, Bulgaria & other countries from this bloc.

The problem of the lack of a streamlined gambling infrastructure was decided by foreign investments and they also gave the first impetus to the development of the gambling industry on the Internet.

Fresh news 2019

Gambling rules in these countries adopted new bills last year or a little earlier, while some other provisions may be approved soon. The Latvian Supervision Inspectorate has taken tough measures against illegal gambling sites. The websites operating in the country, which did not have a proper license, were blacklisted. At the moment there are more than 1,500 domains in this list.

The Lithuanian Parliament unanimously approved a new set of gambling laws, which should contribute to the control of casino operators. All slot machines working in the country are to be connected to a centralised electronic system of control, which will help with monitoring the operation of slot machines, data protection and transparency of financial transactions. The renewed system is to work from the year 2021.

Licensing gambling on the example of Montenegro

Gambling has been legal in Montenegro since 2006, when the law “On gambling” was adopted and a special state commission “E-Gambling Montenegro” was created to control and regulate this industry. Online gambling was recognised as legal in 2011 and the same rules and requirements were relevant for it as for land-based bookmakers.

The main feature of gambling licensing in Montenegro is that the operator is forced to obtain separate licenses for casinos, sports bets, poker and other card games, live casinos, other online games (besides lotteries). Accordingly, costs are rising, since each of the desired licenses must be paid separately.

The rest of the licensing process is quite simple. The operator must open a limited liability company (LLC) or a joint-stock company in Montenegro, create an account in the Montenegrin bank, pay the cost of a license (or licenses) from 15 to 20 thousand Euros. At the same time, any bank account opened abroad must be approved by the national commission.

Once a year, the operator will have to renew the license, replenishing the budget of Montenegro with another 15 thousand Euros. Profit tax is only 9%, which is very little compared to other European countries.

However, a Montenegrin gambling license has a drawback: many payment systems and banks have stopped working with operators licensed in this country. In addition, Montenegrin gambling licenses have not yet fallen into the white list of the UK Gambling Commission, which contains the most reliable gambling licenses.

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