Belarus: a brief gambling market review

The Ministry of Taxes and Duties of Belarus issued 12 new gambling licenses in 2019. But taking into account that 9 licenses were withdrawn for various reasons, the change does not look so significant. The exception is the bookmakers, which are increasingly going online.

According to the register of gambling licenses, on January 1, 2020, 107 companies had the right to operate casinos, slot machines, bookmakers and totes (104 in 2018).

Among the newcomers there was Russian bookmaker company Leon, which works in Belarus with clients online and via two offline betting points. The bookmakers have been the drivers of global and Belarusian gaming markets in recent years. This was a consequence of the development of information technology. The largest players in the Belarusian market are international companies. And they are following the online trend. The number of offline betting points is constantly decreasing. There are companies ( like 1xBet and Bison) which offer only online services.

The top five most active bookmakers in Belarus include companies that use both online and offline channels. These are Parimatch and FavBet (Ukrainian by origin), Russian Marathon and BetCity and local Maxline.

Last year, bookmakers received some good news from Belarusian government. The mandatory deposit for online bookmakers (it is supposed to be used in case of financial problems with the gambling operator) was changed to the amount of $ 250 thousand. Initially, the sum of 1 million dollars was required and now only owners of online casinos have to meet this requirement.

Andriey Nabukhotnyi

Former editor-in-chief of Ukrainian specialized magazine catalogue Entertainment Industry. Andriey is E-Play's observer of Eastern European gambling market.

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