Author: Ivan MostovoyUpdated
In July 2020, the authorities legalised the gambling business and allowed casinos and bookmakers to operate after an almost 12-year pause. A year has passed. It means it is time to consider the first results of the gaming establishments’ work in Ukraine.
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The main provisions of Law No. 768-IX "On State Regulation of Organising and Conducting Gambling":
All types of gambling are allowed — online and offline activities
Entrepreneurs can open land-based or online casinos, start betting businesses, and organise the work of poker rooms
A licence is required for legal work
The permit is valid for 5 years. After that, the document can be prolonged according to a simplified scheme.
The cost of the licence depends on the type of activity. The launch of an offline casino is the costliest option. Such a high price is caused by the need of obtaining permits for each unit of equipment
Mandatory certification of casino hardware
The law contains a regulation on the inspection of equipment — slot machines, bookmaker and lottery terminals, game consoles, electronic video attractions.
Besides, entrepreneurs need to certify online systems for launching internet casinos
The nuances of localising entertainment clubs
Land-based casinos and slot machine halls can be located only based on 4- and 5-star hotels.
The space of establishments is calculated in proportion to the number of hotel rooms. The type of populated locality should be considered too
Special gaming zones
The government will name five locations with preferential terms for launching casino businesses soon. It is expected that it will be the Black Sea coast, the Carpathians, as well as border regions
In May 2021, the first casino complexes in Ukraine opened their doors:
The owners of Billionaire Casino note that they have already spent over 90 million hryvnias on opening their land-based establishment. The lion's share of the costs is associated with licensing. The operator paid the price of the casino general permit (72 million hryvnias) and also incurred the expenses of licensing equipment (18 million hryvnias) — ground-based slot cabinets and gaming tables for card games and roulette.
Law No. 768-IX states that the government will redirect the proceeds from licensing to the construction of infrastructure: roads, transport interchanges and access routes, social facilities (hospitals, schools, kindergartens).
Casino operators note the following trends in the development of the gaming industry in Ukraine:
Despite the growth prospects, many operators have to deal with some issues associated with the launch of casinos and conducting businesses.
According to Law No. 768-IX, operators are required to test equipment and the online system before launching casino start-ups. This is the only way to obtain a licence and manage an establishment legally.
The certification procedure requires improvement:
It is worth considering such controversial issues:
As many experts note, the issue of underground gaming clubs has not been resolved to the full in Ukraine. Such establishments create competition with legal casinos that work honestly — provide employment opportunities, invest in infrastructure, pay all taxes.
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