Gambling business in Romania
Today, the gambling business in Romania is absolutely legal. Land-based gaming entertainment is widespread and popular in the country. Anyone over the age of 18 can play in both land and online casinos. Online gambling was officially legalized relatively recently - in 2015. At the same time, government agencies continue to work to improve the legal framework. The last changes in the relevant changes were made in 2016. The new regulations have significantly changed the situation in the online gaming industry.
Modern history of gambling development - gambling legislation in Romania
Romania has a long history of legalizing gambling. The first national lottery in the country, the Lottery Romana, appeared as early as 1906. Gambling was banned under Nicolas Ceausescu. However, in 1990, after the overthrow of his government, the gambling business was legalized again. Already in 1991 appeared the first casino in the country, founded by the Austrian company Casino Austria.
From this moment began the active development of the gaming industry in Romania:
Today, the activities of land-based gambling establishments are regulated by almost a dozen official laws, ordinances and regulations. In addition, there are additional instructions, orders, solutions provided by the National Gambling Office.
Online gambling business business regulation
The situation with the legalization of online toys is a bit more complicated. In fact, gaming sites have been operating on Romanian servers since 2008-2009. But until 2015, their activities were considered illegal.
The first attempt to legalize online casinos took place in 2009. At the same time, the European Commission has identified a number of shortcomings in the draft law.
The process of legalizing online gambling in 2011 ended similarly. EU officials have said that Romanian laws do not fully comply with EU law.
And only the last law passed in 2015 was deemed satisfactory. The county government has established a legal framework for doing business for local and international companies. In addition, they introduced a new taxation system.
The offer of legalization was also accepted by the operators operating on the black market since 2009. The issue can be resolved by paying 20% tax on all income earned during the years of operation.
Oficiul Național pentru Jocuri de Noroc - Gambling Regulator in Romania
At the same time, in 2015, the Romanian National Gambling Bureau (Oficiul Național pentru Jocuri de Noroc, ONJN) became the official gambling regulator. Thus, the state was able to centralize all activities related to the gambling business on the Internet.
The main tasks of the department were:
According to the head of the department, Cristinela Nistor, among other issues, the bureau is trying to submit proposals for the development of new provisions in order to bring Romanian legislation in line with European norms. Thus, stimulating the market and increasing budget revenues.
The results were not delayed. Already in 2016, new rules for online gaming operators were published. In accordance with their provisions, the following requirements have been introduced:
For providers: they must be resident in Romania or the EU and have the appropriate licenses;
According to the terms of payment of taxes: in case of violation of these requirements, the exact term, payment methods and penalties were determined;
Towards Website Design: Online casinos are committed to clearly defining the number of bets, prizes, limits and percentage measures in Romanian.
The new provisions have provoked mixed reactions. As it turned out, most operators do not have a license that meets the requirements of the new rules.
Some companies have chosen to leave the Romanian market. In particular, William Hill suspended the operation of its casinos
However, many providers have complied with the terms of the laws adopted in 2015-2016. In addition, several well-known companies have announced their desire to develop the Romanian market.
Conditions for obtaining a gaming license in Romania
Games in Romania today are divided into several categories:
Types of gaming licenses in Romania
Permits are issued separately for each type of gambling business:
Despite the legalization of the gambling business, there are strict restrictions in Romania. In particular, only adult citizens who have reached the age of 18 are eligible to play.
Moreover, according to the rules established in 2016, operators are obliged to take care of the protection of minors:
Popular online casino in Romania
Due to the recent legalization of the gambling business in the country, Romanian casinos are still less well known. Among the popular portals, users mention the resources of international operators:
Most of them are multi-platform portals that allow you to play slots from well-known manufacturers: Microgaming, IGT, NetEnt, Betsoft, Merkur and others.
Prospects for the development of the gambling business in Romania
Despite the rather strict legal requirements and the regulation of the online industry, experts positively assess the prospects for the development of gambling in Romania. Positive forecasts are confirmed by the facts confirming the active development of the market by international operators. for example:
According to a report by the European Gambling Commission, the flow of companies wishing to enter the Romanian market has increased significantly. 13 operators became holders of temporary licenses. The list of applicants for permits continues to grow.