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There are favourable conditions for adoption of Draft Law 2713-д and introduction of the SOMS

The legalization of gambling was the first step on the way to unshadowing the entire sector of the economy. Considering the amount of state budget revenues from this sector after legalization, this step was successful. In addition to paying license fees, legal gambling organizers created thousands of jobs, invested hundreds of millions of dollars in the economy and provided active financial support to the state in the fight against Russia over the past year. However, legalization alone is not enough for establishing a full-featured market. It is also necessary to create regulatory and tax conditions for its effective operation.

A civilized gambling business cannot exist without clear rules of operation, just like any other business. Legal gambling organizers need a regulatory framework that will define their accountability to the state and provide guidance on how interactions with players should be organized. Lack or vagueness of these frameworks leads to two adverse phenomena that hinder market development:

First, when the rules are not defined for a specific industry, general rules are used, which, most likely, do not take into account its specifics. As a result, market players may not understand what can and cannot be done, how they should report to regulatory bodies, what internal financial information they should provide, etc. This significantly increases the level of misunderstanding between government agencies and businesses.

Secondly, government agencies and services can take advantage of the regulatory uncertainty that prevails in the market and force its participants to undergo additional checks or pay fees and taxes that they do not really have to pay. This leads to increased corruption risks.

Unfortunately, a similar situation is currently observed in the legal gambling market in Ukraine, because the unified State Online Monitoring System (SOMS) has not yet been implemented, and the specific tax draft Law 2713-д has not been adopted. This is a big disadvantage for the market, because in addition to the state represented by the Commission on Regulation of Gambling and Lotteries, the legal gambling organizers themselves support these legislative initiatives.

The latter, more than anyone, are interested in the introduction of clear rules of the game and the availability of a single online transaction monitoring system. After all, it would be easier for everyone. The state controls all financial transactions of legal organizers with players, and businesses do not have to think about how to report to regulatory authorities, because everything is done automatically in real time. In the leading Western jurisdictions, the state controls the rates and taxes of the legal gambling business precisely through the online monitoring system. This significantly increases market transparency.

The introduction of SOMS and adoption of draft Law 2713-д is beneficial for the state and business from a public point of view as well, because these steps will finally put an end to manipulations around the topic of "underpayment" of taxes by legal gambling organizers. It will also allow us to clearly distinguish the legal segment of gambling from the illegal one and to understand how much revenue legal gambling provides and how much damage illegal gambling causes to the state.

I believe that it is necessary to take advantage of the favourable conditions that we have today for the introduction of the SOMS and adoption of draft Law 2713-д. The main thing is to do it simultaneously, because these two steps are closely related.


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