Bratislava council approves citywide ban on gambling

| By Robert Fletcher
Bratislava’s city council has voted in favour of a motion to introduce a ban on certain forms of gambling in the Slovakian capital.

The new banning order will prohibit casinos from operating in Bratislava, while all other types of gaming halls will be shut down.

Bingo halls will be permitted to remain open, however, as will betting shops and other forms of in-person wagering.

The ban will not come into effect immediately, with the city council allowing all licensed operators to continue offering gambling until their licences expire. The council will not accept any new applications for licences, nor allow operators to renew their existing licences.

Most operators’ licences are due to run until 2023 or 2024, meaning it will be at least two years before the impact of the ban is felt.

The ban comes after the council in September received a petition signed by more than 70,000 Bratislava residents calling for gambling to be outlawed in the city.

“The council has done everything in its power to ensure that the will of the people expressed in the petition has been fulfilled,” it said of the subsequent ban.

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