Amendments to betting and totes licensing in Russia, shutdown of gambling facilities in Riga: gambling business news
This week, the Ministry of Finance of the Russian Federation offered to limit money transfers sent by individuals to online casinos and illegal lotteries, and mayor of Riga is planning to shut down almost all gambling parlors in the city. Read about the main events in the gambling business in our weekly digest.
Gambling houses to shut down
in the capital of Latvia
There will be only one exception: gambling parlors located at four and five star hotels. The mayor of Riga Nils Ušakovs reported the news. He asked the Riga City Council's Legal Department and Development Department to prepare draft decisions on the cancellation of all licenses for gambling facilities with the exception of four and five star hotels.
“Two years ago, we already decided to close gambling houses in the historical center of the city. However, now we should pay attention to residential districts,” Nils said.
On March 21, the Security, Corruption Prevention and Public Order Issues Committee of Riga will set to analyze the bill.
Gambling business brought
over 1.5 million rubles to Crimea budget
In January and February of 2019, gambling tax revenue exceeded 1.5 million rubles in the Republic of Crimea. The data was reported by the Ministry of Finance of the Republic. The report shows that the gambling business brought 1.65 million rubles in taxes to the budget as of March 1.
Ministry of Finance offered to limit money
transfers sent by individuals to online
casinos and illegal lotteries
The Russian Ministry of Finance reported the start of the work on the bill “About the introduction of amendments to article 6.2 of the Federal law “About lotteries” and article 5.1 of the Federal law “About state regulation of activities on organization and conduct of gambling and about introduction of amendments to certain legislative acts of the Russian Federation”.
The draft bill is available on the Federal draft legislation portal.
The document will enhance the measures against illegal activities on organization and conduct of online lotteries and gambling. Public discussion of the draft bill will take place from March 25 to April 5. It is planned that amendments will come into effect starting from January 2020.
Russia introduced changes in the regulations
of betting and totes licensing
On March 25, the Governmental Decree of the Russian Federation of March 21, 2019, № 298 “About the introduction of amendments to the Licensing regulations of gambling activity in betting houses and totes” was published on the Official Internet Portal of Legal Information.
According to the document, the abovementioned gambling facilities located beyond gambling zones can operate only on the territories of the subjects of the Russian Federation where their activity is not banned by the law in accordance with paragraph 7, 8 of article 16 244-FZ.
Thus, organizers of gambling activity at betting houses and totes have to reissue the license within two months in case their current licenses contain addresses belonging to the territories of the subjects of the Russian Federation where gambling activity is banned according to 244-FZ.
The Decree will come into effect on April 2, 2019.
Belarusian gambling operators
will start to operate on April 1, 2019
In Belarus, gambling operators reported their readiness to provide services to Russian players. The Belarusian law does not prohibit players from Russia to play at Belarusian online casinos, although they are banned in Russia.
Head of Belarusian Association for Gambling Business Development Aleksey Marchenko said that the introduction of restrictions for foreign players had no sense: Belarusian casinos pay winning taxes to the state budget.
However, according to the current legislation, Russian citizens have to pay taxes on cash prizes to the state budget of the Russian Federation: players can be prosecuted for the avoidance of taxes on winnings.