Fight Against Unlicensed Providers: 600 Websites Banned in Bulgaria

During the last three months of 2023, the Bulgarian National Revenue Agency (NRA) decided to block more than 600 gaming websites due to the lack of an appropriate license. The latest list of violations posted includes domains such as 22bet, Luckyhit, Leon Casino and others.

An analysis commissioned by the NRA found that the websites provided opportunities to register gaming accounts and participate in online gambling using a variety of payment methods. This occurred despite a clear violation of Bulgarian gambling legislation due to the lack of appropriate licenses.

Violators identified by the NRA are required to cease their activities in Bulgaria within three days of receiving the order. Failure to comply with the deadline may result in the Magistrates Court ordering internet service providers to block access to the websites in question.

Bulgaria is strengthening its gambling regulations by introducing a new anti-money laundering unit, “Prevention and Combating Money Laundering”, within the NRA.

These changes are part of an extensive overhaul of gambling regulation in the country from 2020. They are implemented as a result of close cooperation with the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) and MONEYVAL, aimed at addressing weaknesses in combating money laundering and the financing of terrorism.

Last September, the NRA blocked a further 150 gaming sites, declaring them illegal for not being licensed to operate in the EU.

In addition, the government has significantly increased the license fee and income tax. The country’s coffers are expected to receive an additional BGN200m (£88m) from gambling in 2024.

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