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During the war, business support should become the basis of public regulatory policy


Two years have passed since the entry into force of the Law of Ukraine “On State Regulation of Activities in the Organization and Conduct of Gambling” No. 768-IX.


During this time, much has been done to develop the domestic gambling market by the private business and by the national regulator, the Commission for Regulation of Gambling and Lotteries (CRGL).


However, today when for the seventh month in a row, we have been living in a special legal regime of martial law due to a full-scale invasion of russian troops in Ukraine, the further functioning of the legal gambling market requires help from lawmakers.


The law on gambling legalization was adopted without considering the peculiarities of warfare, which is not surprising. In fact, all Ukrainian laws regulating the operation of any economic activity do not have special sections on business operations during martial law.


However, in times of war, business support should be the basis of public regulatory policy. That is why there was a need to amend the legislation. And the initiators of such changes should be primarily state regulatory institutions, as happened with the domestic market of gambling and lotteries.


For instance, CRGL is doing everything possible to help the business in these challenging times and show parliamentarians the need to introduce legislative changes allowing entrepreneurs to adapt to such force majeure circumstances as war.


The first but crucial step has been taken for this. CRGL, as an executive body, has agreed on a draft legislative initiative to keep licensees in Ukraine and prevent their bankruptcy and exit from the market.


The draft legislative initiative primarily refers to the settlement of license suspension for the period of martial law and its renewal after the war ends.


Quite adequate proposals are made that are sure to help the business:


1. in the event of martial law, a gambling operator has the right to apply to CRGL for the license suspension;

2. consideration of applications and adoption of a relevant decision by CRGL should take up to five days;

3. the period of the license suspension is not included in the license term;

4. during the period of martial law and 30 days afterward, gambling operators are exempt from liability in the form of license termination due to non-payment of the license fee (mandatory license payments);

5. if, during the period of martial law, CRGL registries stopped working, then after the end of the special legal regime, gambling operators have three days to enter all the required information in the relevant registries;

6. during the license suspension, a gambling operator may not organize and conduct gambling;

7. a gambling operator may renew its license for a piece of gambling equipment subject to its simultaneous transportation to another gambling establishment in another territory (which is crucial for evacuated businesses).


The changes proposed by CRGL, if approved by the lawmakers, will allow legal gambling operators to continue their activities in Ukraine during the war and after our victory, save jobs, and continue to fill the state budget.


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