Slovenia – Slovenia set to liberalise gaming marketBy Lewis - 10 February 2022
Slovenia’s National Assembly has approved, at the second reading, amendments to the country’s Gaming Act that aim to liberalise the gaming market, scrapping most curbs on casino ownership and employee licensing and allowing five as opposed to the current two lottery organisers. The final vote on the changes will be held in March.
The proposed Draft Act, if passed, will establish a legal framework that will enable concessions to be granted on the basis of a public tender. The award of concessions and their extension is currently decided by the Government and the Minister of Finance at their own discretion.
The Finance Committee has agreed changes to the Gaming Act that introduce partial liberalisation of the sector, enabling multiple organisers of classic games of chance. The MPs added an amendment under which a possible shortfall in funding of humanitarian and sport organisations would be maintained via the state budget.
The changes abolish the requirement that companies wishing to obtain a concession for classic games of chance and special games of chance in casinos have to be organised as joint stock companies. It will no longer be required that the applicant for a concession for special games of chance has to be based in Slovenia either. Land-based presence will still be required for classic games of chance.
Transparency International Slovenia has warned about what it perceives as doubtful transparency in the adoption of changes to the gaming act, and stakeholders from the gaming sector and charities strongly oppose the changes.
The proposed changes to the Gambling Act will potentially open the door to the Slovenian gambling market to international operators and will ensure compliance with EU legislation.