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What does legal gambling do for the state during the war?


Recently, the volume of unreasonable hate against legal gambling in the public sphere has been growing exponentially. Through manipulations, agents of influence of the illegal gambling business are trying to erase the boundaries between illegal and legal gambling, actively promoting the thesis of a dead end. At the same time, the contribution of legal gambling to the country's economy and overcoming the challenges it faced due to the war is completely leveled.

It is interesting that today all the problems related to gambling are being associated with the fact of gambling legalization, although in fact, the main reason is illegal gambling facilities and online platforms. They are responsible for the spread of gambling addiction, illegal use of players' personal data, non-payment of winnings, etc. After all, legal gambling organizers have voluntarily assumed a number of obligations to the state and players. Therefore, they simply cannot and do not want to afford it, as they risk losing licenses worth tens or hundreds of millions of hryvnias.

This raises a number of important questions. Why, when talking about the "problems" created by legal gambling, does no one talk about the multibillion-dollar profits that the state budget receives from this business for paying license fees and taxes? Why doesn't anyone mention that almost every legal organizer today has its own charity fund aimed at helping the military and civilians affected by the consequences of the war?

And the most important question is why no one is raising the issue of illegal immigrants so actively? It would be interesting to see how much lottery operators who operate without licenses and also illegally simulate gambling on their online platforms have donated to the Armed Forces and humanitarian needs. What are the names of their charitable foundations? Where can I view their donor statistics and find links to the fundraisers they hold? Of course, these are rhetorical questions. The only thing lotteries can "boast" about is the billions of hryvnias of losses they annually cause to the state budget through their "activities".

To better demonstrate the contrast between legal and illegal gambling, let's take a look at the actual amount of aid that legal organizers have managed to transfer to humanitarian and military needs during the war with Russia.

1. Favbet Foundation. Since the beginning of the full-scale invasion, the Armed Forces and other defense forces have already received 280 vehicles from the Foundation, which is also an active participant in the "Army of Drones" project of the Ministry of Digital Transformation. With the Foundation's support, 650 drones of various types, including strike drones, have been delivered to the Armed Forces' frontline units. The Foundation also provided hundreds of pieces of special equipment to the Armed Forces of Ukraine: thermal imagers, rangefinders, sights, communication and electronic warfare systems. The amount of assistance to the Armed Forces is over UAH 300 million. In total, Favbet Foundation has spent over UAH 1 billion to cover military and humanitarian needs.

2. Slots City Foundation has divided its activities into six priority projects that provide assistance to the army and internally displaced persons. The Foundation prioritized three projects for the purchase and repair of equipment, as well as two projects for targeted assistance to the military and IDPs. The total amount of assistance has already exceeded UAH 180 million.

3. As part of the Cosmolot Airlines project, the company has reinforced several dozen units of the Armed Forces with 50 of the latest Punisher electronic warfare UAVs. The company has also allocated UAH 12.5 million for the production of a pre-production model of Ukraine's first UAV REX drone, which meets the standards of a full target destruction cycle in accordance with the concept of modern warfare. The total amount of assistance is over UAH 230 million.

4. Pin-Up also has its own foundation, the Pin-Up Foundation, which allocates all its resources to cover humanitarian needs. In particular, with the support of the Foundation, the evacuation of more than 100 Ukrainians who lost their homes abroad was organized. The Foundation took an active part in the rescue mission after the explosion of the Kakhovka hydroelectric power plant, repaired and equipped children's centers in Kyiv region, and installed stationary street shelters in Kherson and Kharkiv region. As part of the Line-Up project, the Foundation delivered 200 tons of essential goods to frontline cities and helped 15,000 Ukrainians from more than 100 settlements in Donetsk, Luhansk, Kharkiv, Kherson, Mykolaiv and Zaporizhzhia regions. The total amount of assistance is over UAH 153.3 million.

5. Prior to being deprived of the opportunity to conduct business, Parimatch had donated UAH 700 million to help the Ukrainian army since the beginning of the full-scale invasion. The lion's share of these funds, namely UAH 386 million, was spent on assistance to the Armed Forces of Ukraine, which the company provided in 2022. In addition, the company created a special charitable foundation, the Parimatch Foundation, whose main activities were to help Ukrainian children and temporarily displaced persons.

Such companies as VBET Ukraine, GGPoker, and others also have their own funds to support Ukraine. If we calculate the total amount of assistance, it turns out that the gambling business has already transferred more than UAH 2.33 billion for humanitarian and military needs. Add to this more than UAH 11 billion in taxes and UAH 1.969 billion in license fees that gambling businesses have transferred to the state budget through KRAIL.

So, if you look at the statistics and do some math, legal gambling is much more useful than lobbyists for illegal immigrants and opponents of gambling legalization reform want to make it out to be.

 

 

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