International edition
September 25, 2020

The number of Internet cafes providing access to online gambling rose three-fold

Russian officials concerned over “surrogate” gambling

(Russia).- Officials in Russia have expressed concerns over the proliferation of “surrogate” gambling technologies such as online casinos and slot parlours three months after an almost total ban on land-based casinos came into force in the nation. “We are seriously concerned about the rise of surrogate technologies,” Sergei Baidakov, Deputy Mayor for Moscow, told The Associated Press. “They are the by-products of imperfect legislation.”

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aidakov stated that about one-third of Moscow's 525 casinos and slot machine halls had opened ‘lottery parlours’ selling instant tickets while the number of Internet cafes providing access to online gambling resources has risen three-fold since July.

Gambling has been confined to four far-flung special zones since early-July following the enactment of legislation proposed by then-President Vladimir Putin. Despite the loss in taxes as the industry readjusts, Baidakov stated that the nation’s budget had suffered little with revenues down 0.5 %. “It's nil compared to the benefits to the health of the nation,” said Baidakov.

Moscow lawmaker Inna Svyatenko said city and Federal authorities would close legal loopholes that allow online gambling and the unrestricted sale of lottery tickets.

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