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Belarus to formulate new rules for gambling

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Belarus to formulate new rules for gamblingReading Time: 2 minutes

Belarus is all geared up to formulate a new legal framework for gambling and online casinos in the country. Belarusian Tax and Duties Ministry has already formulated a draft decree. It is awaiting the Parliament’s approval.

The head of the Ministry Sergey Nalivaiko said that the draft document would provide for an increase in the age limits for visiting gambling establishments from 18 to 21 years. Visitors of casinos, including online ones, will be prohibited from borrowing other visitors, as well as gamblers, money (including electronic) or their equivalent (chips, tokens, etc.) for gambling.

Also, the document provides for the legalisation of online gaming in the Republic of Belarus.

It creates the possibility of recognising on a contractual basis the results of tests and examinations of models of slot machines, as well as virtual gambling establishments conducted by foreign authorised bodies (organisations).

It is planned to take additional measures aimed at improving the conditions for gambling operators. In particular, administrative procedure for registering taxable items (like gambling machines, gaming tables, cash desks of bookmaker’s offices) is planned to be cancelled. Accounting of this equipment will be made through connections to a special computer cash system (CCS), allowing to pay tax on gambling in a fixed amount, based on the actual connection of gaming equipment to the CSK, which provides control over the turnover in the field of gambling.

For those operators who use the gaming equipment for less than 15 calendar days in the tax period, it is proposed to reduce the fixed rate of tax on gambling by 50 per cent. As a rule, these are new gambling operators, organisers of poker tournaments, or those who modernise the gaming equipment or repair it.

For totes and bookmakers, which operate online, there will be a transitional period – two years from the date of entry into force of the provisions of the draft decree. During this period they will be able to carry out activities on the basis of a special permit (license) issued prior to the entry into force of the decree and thereby adapt to the new requirements for online operators set by the decree. It is proposed to introduce obligatory expertise and certification of the information security of online gambling.

“At this stage, considering the planned legalisation of online gambling and additional investments needed to organise a new type of activity in the gambling business, the Ministry of Taxes and Duties does not plan any changes in the taxation policy of this activity,” – Sergey Nalyvayko specified.

Thus, fixed rates for gambling tax are planned to be maintained for the next three years without changes, at the level of tax rates established for 2018.

 

Source: belta.by


Source: Latest News on European Gaming Media Network

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Intralot and Intracom deny news of merger

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Greek gambling company Intralot and local IT holding firm Intracom have both denied news about their potential merger. In their separate statements, which curiously looked identical, both companies stressed that the news did not “correspond to reality.”

There had been rumours that a mega-merger of Intralot and Intracom was on the cards. The rumours emerged after Intralot suffered a drop of the nominal value of its bond and a downgrading of its credit rating at the start of the year.

The rumour gained ground because Intralot and Intracom have the same founder and majority shareholder – Greek business mogul Sokratis Kokkalis. Mr. Kokkalis stepped in as the new CEO of the gambling company early this month, replacing Antonios Kerastaris. The now former Chief Executive of the Greek gaming, betting, and lottery group departed after Intralot lost its bid to continue providing sports betting technology to Turkey’s state-owned operator Iddaa.


Source: Latest News on European Gaming Media Network
This is a Syndicated News piece. Photo credits or photo sources can be found on the source article: Intralot and Intracom deny news of merger

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PAGCOR Press Statement on Quezon City’s insistence to impose casino entry fees

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PAGCOR Press Statement on Quezon City's insistence to impose casino entry feesReading Time: 2 minutes

 

As Quezon City Vice Mayor Joy Belmonte continues to insist on the imposition of entrance fees to Quezon City residents who wish to play in casinos and other gambling facility in the area, the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR) underscores several cases and provisions that cite the supremacy of national government over local government units.

First, in “Basco vs. PAGCOR (1991)”, wherein the City of Manila filed a case seeking to annul the PAGCOR charter, the court ruled that Presidential Decree (P.D.) 1869 waived the right of the city to impose taxes and fees. The court decision cited that the power of the local government to impose taxes and fees “is always subject to limitations which Congress may provide by law.”

It furthered that P.D. 1869 remains an operative law, until amended or repealed.

Another case, “City of Cagayan de Oro vs. Pryce and PAGCOR (1994)”, cited that ordinances should not contravene a statute that is obvious. It stated that “municipal governments are only agents of the national government; and local councils exercise only delegated legislative powers from Congress as the national law-making body.” Hence, local government units cannot be superior to Congress from which they derive their powers.

The third case, “Herbert Bautista vs. PAGCOR (2016)”, cited that under its Charter, PAGCOR and its agents are exempted from paying local taxes as P.D. 1869 Section 13 provides that “no tax of any kind or form, income or otherwise, as well as fees, charges or levies of whatever nature, whether national or local, shall be assessed and collected under this Franchise from the Corporation nor shall any form of tax or charge attach in any way to the earnings of the Corporation, except a franchise tax of five percent of the gross revenue or earnings derived by the Corporation from its operation under this franchise.”

The entry fees on the city residents who will enter the casino which the Quezon City local government is contemplating on imposing, takes the form of “tax” because of its nature to generate revenues.

However, if the purpose of the imposition of entry fees is to discourage citizens to frequent gaming facilities, such practice is an obvious exercise of police power, and in fact, an encroachment on the function of a national regulatory entity.

PAGCOR, having been granted by Congress with the power to regulate gambling, has the authority to determine the rules and regulations that may deem fit in the regulation of the gaming industry.

If PAGCOR does not find it necessary to impose entrance fees to its clients, then Quezon City’s local government cannot supersede this even if it claims that the imposition of entry fees is only applicable to their constituents.

Besides, if the local government of Quezon City believes that doing such is tantamount only to “safeguarding the welfare of their people”, why did it grant so many Letters of No Objection (LONOs) and Resolutions of No Objection (RONOs) to bingo and other electronic gaming sites in Quezon City?

As of February 28, 2019, there are 97 electronic gaming sites in Quezon City. Of this number, 63 are bingo sites and 34 are eGames gaming sites. This figure does not include the LONO and RONO granted by Quezon City government to Solaire Resort and Casino.


Source: Latest News on European Gaming Media Network
This is a Syndicated News piece. Photo credits or photo sources can be found on the source article: PAGCOR Press Statement on Quezon City’s insistence to impose casino entry fees

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Blackstone to acquire Ukrainian gaming development company

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The Blackstone Group LP, a US-based investment and asset management company, is all set to acquire Murka Ltd and Murka Entertainment Ltd, an Unranian company that develops unique social and mobile games. The Blackstone Group has already informed Cypriot Commission for the Protection of Competition about the plan.

Murka, established in 2011, is known for its social-casino games like Slots Journey, Slots Journey 2, TX Poker, S & H Casino, Vegas Slots, Royal Fortune Slots, Bubbla Cadabra and Scatter Slots.

These games, where real money cannot be won, exist as mobile apps and on Facebook. Publisher of social casino games earns money via selling in-game content and/or advertising. According to various data, the global social casino market in 2018 brought publishers from $ 3.2 billion in total to $ 3.46 billion on mobile platforms.

Currently, over 100 people work in the Kiev, Dnipro and Lviv offices of Murka. The company has not commented the conditions of the upcoming transaction yet.


Source: Latest News on European Gaming Media Network
This is a Syndicated News piece. Photo credits or photo sources can be found on the source article: Blackstone to acquire Ukrainian gaming development company

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