Ukraine loses billions annually due to lack of regulation in gambling business

The state budget of Ukraine loses about 4-10 billion UAH per year due inefficient gambling business regulation, in particular, the separation of illegal gambling from legal state lotteries.

The information was announced during the press conference of the experts of the Center for Economic Strategy (CES). The experts presented the results of the study “How much the budget of Ukraine loses without the rule of law”.

According to Maria Repko, the deputy director of CES, data of various independent sources show that the turnover of the illegal gambling business in Ukraine is estimated at about 40 billion UAH ($1.43 billion). Unfortunately, taxes from this business are not transferred to the budget.

“If we assume that after the gambling business was banned, the volume of the illegal market grew along with the growth of GDP and changes in the consumption structure … then we will get from 4 to 10 billion UAH of lost taxes from the gambling business. We all can see lottery halls in the streets, which are actually slot machines halls,” Maria Repko said.

One of the possible reasons that the gambling business prevails today in Ukraine, and not legal lotteries, according to the expert, could be the wrong tax policy of the state in relation to lotteries.

As Maria Repko noted, today the state needs to urgently take steps to solve the problem of gambling, in particular, by separating different types of  gambling.

“Online casinos, bookmaking should be part of a wider regulation of the gambling business. Moreover, this regulation should differ significantly: lotteries are one thing, slot machines are another, online casinos are different, bookmakers are different. And we need a normal and understandable legislative and regulatory framework for business. This is not easy, but it needs to be implemented, ” the CES expert summarized.


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