Gambling business was legalized in Ukraine in 2020. What does this mean for the state, for its residents and for the representatives of the gambling business? Expert opinions.

The new bill concerning the legalization of the gambling business was supported by the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine in the second reading. The discussed project covers the activities of not only offline casinos, but also online platforms. They also discussed the running of bookmakers, lotteries, as well as issues related to playing online poker.

Experts believe that the legalization of gambling will only benefit Ukraine and its residents. After all, to one degree or another, gaming organizations still exist, but they do not pay taxes and have a bad effect on the criminogenic situation. Now the work will proceed in accordance with the law, international operators will come to the country, which will create good conditions for the development of the entertainment and tourism sectors. Such large brands as Parimatch and Michael Boettcher’s Shangri La by Storm International have already announced their interest in working in Ukraine.

Where Exactly Will It Be Allowed To Build A Casino

As part of the initial version of the project, it was assumed that the casino would be possible only on the territory of 5-star hotels, provided that the total number of rooms is at least 100. However, in the final version, the list of acceptable places was expanded up to suburban complexes with a total area of 10 thousand sq. m.

Additionally, special zones will be created for lovers of casino games, not only in settlements, but also in recreation centers and other remote sites.

As for the slot halls, they can be placed in hotels with the number of rooms from 25. Moreover, the license is issued for 250 machines. One room must hold at least 50 pieces.

Bookmakers will be allowed not only in offline establishments, but also on Internet sites. In the case of ground points, there are restrictions, they can only be placed on the territory of hotels with 3 to 5 stars. The list of acceptable places for placing a bookmaker includes a hippodrome.

The bets themselves are allowed to be made only on real sporting events; all virtual tournaments and competitions are prohibited.

What Are The Requirements For Players

The main limitation is the age of the player. Only persons over the age of 21 will be allowed to visit gambling complexes. If the regulatory body discovers the presence of a person under the age of 21 in a particular gambling unit, the business owner will receive a fine or may even lose his license.

In the event that the player himself, due to regular participation in gambling, harms both himself and his family in terms of deteriorating financial condition, then he may receive a ban on visiting the casino for a period of 6 months to 3 years. The ban is imposed by a court decision.

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What Is Allowed And What Is Prohibited By The New Law On The Legalization Of Gambling Business

As part of the signing of the new bill, it is stipulated that online poker will be allowed. But there is one nuance, games for real money, that is, participation outside a tournament becomes possible only in a casino. Tournament poker, and it belongs to sports, is not so limited and the order of such events will be determined by the relevant ministry.

Various terminals of the lottery format, allowing to place bets on the results of computer games, operating on the principle of a random number generator, are prohibited.

Restrictions are also imposed on advertising of gambling. For example, outdoor casino advertising is completely prohibited, and there are restrictions on other types of advertising.

How The Gambling Market Will Be Regulated

It is planned to introduce a specialized system for online monitoring, which will allow state control over the work of game organizers. All gaming equipment will be equipped with special sensors, with the help of which they will be connected to a single system.

In the future, a separate governing body will be formed at the state level. The commissions created on its basis will be engaged in regulating the entire gambling market. It is these bodies that will be able to issue licenses and control the work of all market participants.

The monitoring system itself will not start functioning immediately, it is planned to put it into operation only after 2.5 years. Moreover, the cost of the license until the moment when the online monitoring system starts working will be three times higher.

The Opinion Of Professionals

Many operators are already studying the legislation and legal features to start licensed work in Ukraine.

Darren Keane, Shangri La‘s director, says that even ordinary citizens of the country will benefit. So, in foreign units Storm International, Darren Keane added, there are a lot of Ukrainians working. They left for neighboring countries for a good salary. And when gambling complexes open in their homeland, they will have the opportunity to return home and earn decent money.

Representatives of hotel complexes say that the casino will contribute to the development of the hotel industry. The development of tourism is also forecasted, which will receive a stream of visitors aimed at junket tourism.