As Ukrainian News reports, the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine has suggested that the country’s legislature Verkhovna Rada suspend the Commission for Regulation of Gambling and Lotteries (CRGL) and automate the license issuance.
Deputy Prime Minister for Innovation, Development of Education, Science, and Technology – Minister of Digital Transformation Mykhailo Fedorov reportedly announced the proposal on his Telegram channel.
Fedorov said: “We propose to eliminate the Commission for Regulation of Gambling and Lotteries (CRGL) and automate the issuance of a gambling license. The government supported our bill – and it is sent for consideration to Parliament.”
The Minister reportedly explained that the Parliament should decide to pass the proposed bill that would automate the process of gambling license approval. He added that the human factor would thus be removed from the process, which would then follow the strictly prescribed rules and criteria.
Another source reports that the reason for the proposed bill was a constant failure of CRGL to issue licenses in a timely manner as the Commission’s meetings were made impossible. After martial law had been imposed in the country, some CRGL members were reportedly mobilized into military service.
Such a situation reportedly led to market instability and the loss of revenue and required the regulator’s transformation. The regulator’s transformation is believed by the Ministers to provide additional budgetary savings and speed up the license approval procedure. The Cabinet of Ministers reportedly referred to the automated licensing process as a method to reduce corruption schemes and secure stable revenue flow to the budget.
The Cabinet reportedly stated that the proposal to suspend CRGL was also driven by the intention to mitigate corruptive practices considered endemic to the licensing process: “Licensing is one of the most corrupt processes in gambling. [CRGL] is responsible for this. ”
As the Ukrainian News reports, the Commission for Regulation of Gambling and Lotteries was established in 2020 to regulate the gambling business in the country following its legalization by the Verkhovna Rada and its entry into force on August 13, 2020. At the end of October 2020, the Cabinet of Ministers elected members of the Commission for Regulation of Gambling and Lotteries.
The Commission for Regulation of Gambling and Lotteries granted the first license to bookmakers in March 2021. In the third year of the regulator’s operation, the Cabinet of Ministers suggests that the Parliament suspend CRGL and automate the licensing procedure for cost-saving and corruption allegations. CRGL awaits Rada’s decision.