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Slovenia’s Ministry of Finance reviews gambling strategy

| By Marese O'Hagan
Slovenia's Ministry of Finance has announced plans to review the country's gambling strategy.
Slovenia Ministry of Finance

This comes close to 13 years after Slovenia’s government adopted the current regulations, on 16 December 2010. In a statement, the ministry said the review would seek to update the current strategy and enact “further systemic changes” in the industry.

The updated strategy will consider issues such as the granting of concessions and responsible gambling regulations.

To carry out the review, the ministry will bring in an external independent contractor who will come up with proposals. These proposals will be based on prior analysis of Slovenia’s gambling sector and will also consider the regulations outlined in other states in the European Union and case law of the EU Court of Justice.

“The activity of arranging games of chance, on the one hand, can have a significant impact on economic and tourism development and, on the other hand, it can affect society in a specific way that is not typical of other economic activities,” said the ministry.

“In this spirit, we have decided to consider updating the current legal basis for organising games of chance in such a way that they will enable a long-term sustainable and internationally competitive offer of games of chance that complements Slovenia’s tourist offer and will adequately address domestic demand and minimise the risks of developing problem gambling.”

The proposals will also be made public for consultation.

Increasing interest in the CEE region

The review into Slovenia’s regulations comes as the industry is showing increased interest in the Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) region. Earlier this year, Entain and SuperBet both made bids to acquire Slovenian sports betting monopoly Športna Loterija – however, both exited the race in July.

Slovenian media reported both operators were offering €50m (£43.2m/$53.0m) in exchange for 100% of Športna Loterija’s shares.

But Entain had plans elsewhere in CEE, purchasing Poland’s STS Holding in a £750m deal that closed in August. Mikolaj Cymerman, head of corporate development at Entain’s CEE division, told iGB this is just one in several moves the company plans to make in the CEE region.

Last year, Entain CEE acquired Croatian market leader SuperSport.

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