Gambling Reform Bill Passes First Reading In Bulgarian Parliament

A gambling reform bill introduced to the Bulgarian parliament passed its first reading on Wednesday, advancing with a 110-79 vote.

The bill would effectively alter the tax rate paid by online betting operators by a significant rate, encouraging those casinos to register within the country instead of offering offshore betting services.

The bill was originally delayed, with many insiders speculating that it would not be read until early 2014. However earlier this week a MP was able to convince a committee group to open the bill for debate and a vote.

It will now head on to more debate and a second reading by the parliament.

Under the terms of the new bill, casino operators wishing to offer services in Bulgaria would have to submit an application along with a fee of BGN 100,000 (which is equivalent to roughly £42,000). Operators approved will then pay 20% of the casinos net winnings.

Bulgaria has come under fire for having high online betting taxes, which have kept many major online betting brands offshore. This new measure is an indication that Bulgarian politicians are beginning to realize this is a flawed logic, and are working to rectify the situation.

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