Gaming in Serbia

Gaming in Serbia

As an ex-part of Yugoslavia, Serbia has seen the “light if gambling” for the first time in 1960. Serbians have been very fund to gambling, knowing the fact that by “zdrebe”, (i.e. gambling) people used to decide who will get a better piece of land. Like the country itself, the gambling industry has been subjected to a lot of dramatic transformation, and the peak of it was probably represented by the “Games of Chance Act” signed in 2004 with the mission of securing government funds for the gaming sector. Online gambling was controlled exclusively by Državna Lutrija Srbije, the country’s state lottery.

Ever since then, there has been a clear difference between ‘special games of chance’ and ‘classic al games of chance’. A very specific thing for the Serbian people, regulated the fact that ~Only the state lottery of Serbia can operate the “classical games of chance”~ thus owning a monopoly through the public company.

Classical games of chance consist in:

Lottery games

Sport betting

Keno

Tombola

..and telephone based lottery games (vocal or sms)

On the other hand, special games of chance consisted in:

Blackjack

American roulette

French roulette

Baccarat

Craps

Draw poker

Texas hold’em poker

Ultimate Texas hold’em

Caribbean stud poker

Casino poker

Caribbean 7-card stud poker

Omaha poker

Three-card poker

“Let it ride” poker

Sic bo

Money wheel,

Punto banco

..and Serbian-Russian roulette

Mirjana Aćimović stated that:

“Before the new law there were only 5,000 legally operated Mirjana-Acimovic2-169x300 Gaming in Serbiaslot machines and 300 betting shops in Serbia. After 2004 there were 78 registered operators with 15,000 slot machines and 1,728 legally registered betting shops. This was huge achievement, but it is now necessary to continue with the hard work in this field and take it to the next level.”

Fortunately, after the New Act on Games of Chance was approved in 2011, the online gambling monopoly of the state lottery was dropped and allowed other operators to apply for online gambling licenses in Serbia, but only under specific conditions. One of the conditions was that the company must have a physical branch in the country (i.e. servers). Otherwise, risk being black-listed and blocked. But the most important part of the bill and the best news for all operators is probably the 5% gaming tax over a 10-year license, that offered many opportunities to those investors seeking very small taxes and good opportunities.

Nowadays, statistics mention that “sport betting” has the highest popularity in Serbia, especially in football and basketball sports both enjoying notable achievements. Another thing that helped shape the gambling industry in Serbia, was leading operator MaxBet that signed a deal with SBTech in 2013 in order to upgrade the platform, thus allowing the company to offer bigger variety sports for the people.

“This launch is an important step for the Seven Web Channel, since it is the first major customer running on the entire Seven Web,” said NSoft as Balkan Bet becomes the first operator to give out its products utilizing NSoft’s full SEVEN platform.

If you are a foreign player, you should probably know that even though the state’s national currency is the Dinar, most of the online casinos and betting web sites accept Euro. With over 2000 gaming sites that affiliated with Visa Credit, and 1700 listed with Mastercard and English language support, the gambling industry can be easily accessed by anyone.

If you are an investor, you might want to know how to get a license in Serbia. Here’s how! First of all your company needs to be *physical* present in the country. Once that is checked, you only need :

  • A minimum capital of € 250,000.
  • A Bank Guarantee Deposit of € 150,000 kept in a bank in Serbia.
  • A risk deposit of € 10,000 maintained by the company.
  • Also you need to go to Serbian Online gaming license which covers all E-games of chance, a fee of EUR 2,500 per month has to be paid

With the very small tax of 5% over a 10 year license, Serbia might become the first country in the region with a viable internet gambling policy. Thus, huge amount of money collected by fees taxes and other related expenses to the government could secure this promise to the country. The Serbian Ministry of Finance and Economy has a department known as the Games of Chance Administration (GCA).

Iulian Sasaran

Iulian Sasaran



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