Thursday, August 30, 2018

Online Betting in Belarus Begins in April

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Online Betting in Belarus Begins in April
Online Betting in Belarus Begins in April

Belarus is a country in Eastern Europe, a former part of the Soviet Union, now under the rule of the somewhat conservative, Aleksandr Lukashenko, who has been the country's president for two decades...

...And though it may seem isolated on the surface, Belarus is keeping up with trends. In December, the country's government made cryptocurrencies legal, as it did ICOs and smart contracts. Now, at long last, online gambling's time has come, too.

Roll On April

At the beginning of August, the news came that Lukashenko signed the decree turned to law that's allowing for online gambling to be legalized. This was completed after Belarus Minister of Taxes and Levies, Sergei Nalivaiko, advanced the bill that was to regulate online gambling...

...Tax ministry of this country has now revealed that the online gambling market will take off in April next year. Deputy Tax and Duties Minister, Vladimir Mukvich, said that beginning on April 1, 2019 operators can begin applying for the gaming license.

The Decree No. 305 will set the minimum age of 21 for online gambling, as well as the obligatory identity checks and a number of other "strict conditions for operators." This will be put in motion with the aim of protecting the population of about 10 million people in this country.

Mukvich commented, confirming these claims: “This will be done not with the aim of minimising the number of facilities, but to provide maximum protection to the players.”

Reality Check

Although legalization of online gambling in Belarus is a big step forward for the industry, not everyone expects that it will pull in a huge revenue. One of the reasons is that online gambling is a bit taboo there, but the leading reason could be that there won't be too many operators.

"We cannot say that there will be a large number of them in 2019-2020. We do not see any preconditions for such a trend," said Mukvich when asked about the operators who could apply for license.

Plus, the strict rules might prove too off putting for some operators who will need to deposit funds into designated account to cover any taxes in the event of their business demise. Belarus tax officials will have a special payment system to help them keep an eye on operators and will monitor all transactions.


"Online gambling unlikely to grow fast in Belarus",, August 21, 2018.


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