Russia names gambling zones

Russia has taken its next step in restructuring its gambling laws by specifying the gambling zones that would be allowed under the new law.

The committee on economic policy named zones in the Kaliningrad region, the Altai republic, the Maritime territory, and on the borders of the Rostov region and Krasnodar territory.

With the naming of the zones, the committee on economic policy has recommended the bill for a second reading in the Duma.

The gambling bill was submitted by President Vladimir Putin Oct. 6, and the State Duma approved it for first reading in November before the four gambling zones had been specified. If passed, the bill will lead to the elimination of gambling establishments in cities and only allow it in those zones.

The bill also says that Russia wouldn't be able to have more than four gambling zones functioning at one time, and specifies the two types of gambling zones.

In a residential gambling zone, casinos will be given at least 800 square meters and 100 square meters for gambling machines. Special gambling zones must be located beyond residential areas.

The first zone will be created in July 2007 and the full bill would take affect by 2009, banning all gambling outside of the four zones. Large gambling establishments will have 2009 to move to the gambling zones or shut down, while smaller slot machine halls, casinos and poker rooms will have only until July 2007 to comply.

The businesses that do make the move will be granted a five-year operating license.

Related Article: Russia Restructuring Gambling Laws

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