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How gambling earns money for the state: example of Lithuania

Even during the war, Ukraine has the ability to significantly increase its economic capacity if it pays more attention to what and how our partners and neighbouring countries do, and implements appropriate legislative and administrative changes.

In particular, it is worth paying attention to Lithuania, which according to the information of the Gambling Authority of the country received EUR 195.8 million of gross gaming revenue (GGR) for 2022. This is a 43.8% increase compared to 2021 and almost double the amount received in 2018.

In general, the Lithuanian gambling market has been growing steadily for the last five years in a row, showing a record-breaking increase of more than 40 % in 2022. Primarily, this became possible thanks to the activity of companies working in the online gambling segment.

It is also worth noting that such growth in the legal segment of the Lithuanian gambling market would be impossible without scrupulous and persistent work of the government and the national regulator towards simplifying the procedure for attracting foreign investments and at the same time fighting against the illegal gambling market.

For example, last year, on the initiative of the Gambling Authority of Lithuania, amendments were introduced to the Code of Administrative Offenses (ANK) of the country after the national regulator discovered a loophole in the legislation that prohibited the confiscation of income received through the organization of unlicensed gambling. This year, the Authority plans to pay more attention to the issue of assessing the risks of money laundering and financing of terrorism through the country's gambling establishments.

The Ukrainian gambling market potentially exceeds the Lithuanian market at least eight times. However, in order for this potential to be realized, certain steps must be taken.

First of all, in order to regulate the domestic market, the State Online Monitoring System (SOMS) should be implemented. This is a specialized hardware and software complex designed to monitor the economic activity of gambling organizers, assess the compliance of gambling establishments and platforms with license terms and technical standards. SOMS also allows receiving/transmitting information on accepted bets, paid winnings (prizes), payments, etc., in real time from/to the relevant gaming equipment via the Internet or other communication channels. In addition to that, SOMS should become a guarantor of compliance with the principles of responsible gaming on the part of legal organizers of the gambling business.

As for attracting investments, it is necessary to adopt amendments to the fiscal legislation as soon as possible. They have long been waiting for a positive decision by the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine in the draft law No. 2713-д "On Amendments to the Tax Code of Ukraine and Other Laws of Ukraine on Taxation of Income from the Organization and Conduct of Gambling and Lotteries".

If this is done promptly, then we will be able to see the growth of the legal gambling market in Ukraine within a year.


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