Czech Republic gaming bill takes step forward

The Chamber of Deputies already passed the gambling bill, whilst the Senate's approval may be close.

The gaming regulations aims to allow foreign based licensed operators, to open the market.

Czech Republic.- The gaming legislation reached the approval of the Czech lower house, which will add amendments to the Gambling Act from 1990. The further regulation will establish new taxes prices and open the online market to foreign operators.

Whilst the Senate is still evaluating the future steps of the gambling framework, Czech Republic gaming industry is positive about the unanimous backing it will have. The new legislation is divided in three gambling related bills, the major amendment will be the open license process to operators targeting individuals resident in the Czech Republic in order to obtain a license issued by the Ministry of Finance for the first time.

The Ministry of Finance, Czech Republic’s gambling regulator, will control online and land based gambling from all sectors, including sports betting, lotteries, casino, bingo and slot machines. The regulator will create a public list of webpages with unauthorised online games to keep them blocked in the entire country.

Foreign operators will be able to obtain a license for at least six years. The bidders will have to provide a surety for each gambling type and for each online game type either by way of depositing funds to a special account of the Ministry of Finance or by way of a bank guarantee that will be accepted by the Ministry of Finance. Once the framework reaches the approval of the Senate, the Czech President will have to sign it to activate it. Gambling legislation is expected to come into full force on 1 January 2017.