Moneyval report finds Bulgaria to be AML Compliant

Bulgaria was put on watch two years ago.
Bulgaria was put on watch two years ago.

The country has met international standards.

Bulgaria.- A report from the Council of Europe financial monitoring body Moneyval has deemed Bulgaria to be compliant with international anti-money laundering standards. It comes two years after the body put Bulgaria on watch. 

The follow-up report found Bulgaria to be fully or largely compliant on 13 out of 40 relevant Financial Action Task Force (FATF) recommendations, including due diligence among non-professional businesses and professions, which includes gambling as well as real estate and legal services. The country was found to be at least partially compliant with the remaining 27 recommendations.

Moneyval’s statement said: “Since the adoption of its mutual evaluation report in May 2022, Bulgaria has taken numerous steps to strengthen its anti-money laundering and combating terrorist financing systems.”

Measures introduced since the 2022 report included the creation of a new AML unit at the National Revenue Agency (NRA), which also regulates gambling, to enforce requirements on customer verification, documents and risk assessments. 

Bulgarian ban on gambling ads 

The Bulgarian gambling sector continues to grow. However, this month a ban on gambling ads on television, radio, in print and online has come into force in Bulgaria following publication in the State Gazette and sign-off by president Rumen Radev. Legislators voted in favour of the gambling ad ban last month despite opposition from operators and media.

The gambling adverts that remain permissible are billboards located more than 100 metres from schools and ads on the buildings of gaming halls and casinos themselves. They must feature responsible gambling messaging covering at least 10 per cent of the space. Breaches of the ban will be punishable with fines of up to BGN50,000 (€25,570), with the risk of licence withdrawal for repeat offenders. Television broadcasts of national sports tote draws are exempt from the rules.

In this article:
Gambling gambling regulation