Bratislava's city council has announced a ban prohibiting casinos and other forms of gambling to operate
On 17 December, Bratislava's councilors voted to call for the ban on gambling across the city which will be implemented on 1 January 2021.
The move follows a petition signed by more than 70,000 Bratislava residents in September calling for a law to ban gambling in the city. The city council responded to the inquest by stating:
The council has done everything in its power to ensure that the will of the people expressed in the petition has been fulfilled,
While casinos, gambling halls and betting shops are banned, bingo halls have been given the green light. Nonetheless, the ban won't be put into effect immediately, but rather the city council has given permission for licensed operators to continue their operations until their licenses expire, the majority expiring between 2023 or 2024.
The Bratislava city council has also highlighted that they won't approve new applications for licenses or renewals of existing licenses.
According to the Gambling Insider, by the end of 2019, there were 89 gambling venues, 6 casinos, and 2 bingo halls in Bratislava. Reported gambling revenue reaching €2.76m ($3.38m) in 2019.
Nonetheless, casino operators have argued that the ban will not be effective in mitigating gambling addictions throughout the city. For instance, one of the operators Róbert Vystavil, commenting that the implemented gambling laws are “blanket bans” and unlikely to address the problem.
This gambling ban is the second attempt from the country, the first started on 1 May 2017 and ended on 28 December 2018.
Source: iGaming Business
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