Update Report on Gaming Legislation in Belarus

Update Report on Gaming Legislation in Belarus
Nov 17, 2021peter

Gambling in Belarus is legal, whereby online part thereof is picking up after changes of legislation which occurred in 2018/2019. Belarusian law allows three types of gambling: casino games, slot machines and bookmaking whereby there is a strict licensing regime for land-based establishments. Gambling act defines the following types of licenses (i) land-based betting; (ii) land-based slot-machine halls; (iii) land-based casinos; (iv) land-based totalizator; and (v) online gambling. All types of licenses are issued for an indefinite period of time.

As of 1 April 2019, licensed brick & mortar gambling operators have the option to legally register an online casino in Belarus under the condition that they have operated in the Belarusian gambling market for at least two years prior to obtaining the online license. To this day only three operators applied for online license.

The online operators can operate under an international commercial domain (.com) provided that servers on which the information is exchanged is physically located in the Republic of Belarus. In 2020, Belarusian authorities established a single registry of all types of licenses that can be obtained within the territory of Belarus.

Offshore gambling operators are facing difficulties as of 1 April 2021 when the Resolution on changing the rules of organizing and conducting internet gambling on the territory of the Republic of Belarus has been published on the website of the Ministry of Finance and by which the grace period for these online operators expired and the same became illegal in the territory of Belarus. Non-licensed websites are being blocked without a prior warning.

Also, in 2020 the Government started preparations regarding amendment of the current AML legislative framework, which is aimed at establishing more strict regulation of the AML activities of gambling operators. Further to this and the publicly available information, no significant developments are going to be introduced into gaming law and regulation in Belarus in the near future.

Article originally published in Casino Life Ukraine Issue 07 November 2021

DISCLAIMER: Law Firm Anđelović, Siketić & Tomić d.o.o. wish to avoid inaccuracies and, whilst every precaution has been taken to ensure that information contained in this report is accurate, no liability is accepted for errors or omissions, however caused.