Albania Proposes New Law to End Gambling Prohibition



Benard Maumo

The Government of Albania has proposed a stringent AML (Anti-Money Laundering) law before legalizing gambling. The 'draft law' is currently being reviewed by the Albanian government to end the five-year ban on sports betting and online casino games.

Albania Proposes New Law to End Gambling Prohibition

The Albanian government banned all gambling activities outside state-run casinos in 2018. But late last year, the country’s Prime Minister, Edi Rama, announced that the blanket ban would be lifted because organized crime was still rampant. 

The proposed law, created by the Ministry of Finance and Economy, intends to set up a controlled online gambling sector run by regulated online casinos and sportsbooks. If approved, the operators must observe stringent AML and consumer compliance regulations.

  • The law suggests that operators should only accept digital payments administered by authorized agents like The Albanian Post and Western Union. Players will use locally registered banks and financial institutions certified by the Bank of Albania to reduce money laundering. 
  • Meanwhile, operators with a valid license in the country must pay out winnings promptly and always keep a sum of at least €1.5m in a designated bank account. This should be at least 5% of the total deposits made by players during the past fiscal year.
  • Licensed operators must register their companies with the National Business Centre. In addition, their management and shareholders will be vetted to check for criminal convictions or any judicial proceedings related to criminal offenses. And to help support sports, culture, and welfare projects, the Government of Albania proposes a 15% corporate income tax.

As for land-based casinos, they must set aside 0.4% of their yearly earnings into the fund and pay a 15% corporate income tax. The National Lottery will also contribute 5.4% of its annual turnover to the same fund. 

Before the restriction, over 4 470 gambling companies were operating throughout the nation. Thankfully, the 'draft law' doesn't specify the number of licenses the government can issue or the number of player accounts created at licensed online casinos.

Best gambling quote: “Successful gamblers always have two things on their lips: Silence and a smile”

Favorite Casino Game: Blackjack

Latest news

Can Online Casinos Suspend Players for Winning Too Much?

Can Online Casinos Suspend Players for Winning Too Much?