Free gambling - a trump or trap to Georgia?
26 December, 2013
Free gambling - a trump  or trap to Georgia?
In this region gambling remains unrestricted only in Georgia, creating the risk that it will grow into a gambling haunt region-wide. But some analysts believe that this is an opportunity to channel big money into the state coffer if gambling is regulated properly.Gambling is banned in Azerbaijan, Turkey, and Russia – but not Armenia. Armenia, though, has introduced restrictions on gambling: casinos and gambling entities will be allowed to operate in four resort cities only starting next year. But gambling houses
can be opened anywhere as long as at least USD 100 million is invested in the project.
But Georgian economic analysts expect that these restrictions will inhibit gambling in Armenia. More gamblers will come to Georgia from Armenia, and from other neighboring countries where gambling is banned - Ukraine, Uzbekistan, Kirgizstan, Tajikistan, and Israel. For tourists from these countries gambling in Georgia is a big attraction.
NGOs and some MPs have tried this year to restrict and even ban gambling, but without success. They claimed gambling is harmful to Georgian society, especially to young people who are more vulnerable to temptation. They started with a bill prohibiting commercials for gambling businesses, and planned to go on a ban ultimately. However, the bill failed during the second parliamentary hearing this past spring.
Economic analysts and some of the majority MPs opposed the idea, since it might cause gambling-related businesses, such as advertising companies, to go bankrupt. Hotels running gambling businesses might face serious losses. Ultimately the Georgian economy could lose some GEL 500 million. The state budget might lose GEL 140 million paid by gambling businesses to the state. So, Parliament opted for regulation, with officials and analysts claiming that they could reduce the harm.
“People will never stop gambling,” Ditrikh Muller, a co-founder of Georgian Investment Group, said. ”If we ban it, it will go underground or move online as it did in all countries where it is banned. Why cannot the state use this chance? The legal business will be better regulated at any rate than if it is illegal.”
He believes gambling can be a trump card to Georgia to attract tourists from places such as Armenia where gambling is either banned or restricted. Armenian tourists used to come to Georgia for gambling opportunities even before the restrictions, since stakes are bigger here, because there are more gamblers betting their money. Moreover, for political reasons Turkish and Azeri gamblers never go to Armenia due to political reasons – they come to Georgia … as will Russians, the best hope for Georgian gambling.
According to statistics Russians spend at least twice the world average on gambling: USD 170 is spent per capita in Russia on gambling, whereas the world average is USD 82. Russian gamblers now go to Belarus and Cyprus, where gambling is legal.
To spare young people from temptation some MPs are considering moving gambling houses from big cities to special zones30-50 kilometers away. “Or, to spare our citizens from temptation, we can copy the Monaco sample that enjoys huge profits from gambling,but prohibits gambling by its citizens,” Muller said.

Print
Other Stories
Georgian citizens are granted the right to work in France
The French Embassy in Georgia made remarks on granting Georgian citizens the right to work in France
The New York Times: Bitcoin declines but Georgia still bet on it
The New York Times has recently published an article about reasons, challenges and causes of generating Bitcoin in the former Soviet country Georgia.
EU to allocate € 13 billion for Eastern Partnership countries, including Georgia
The European Union together with the World Bank plans to allocate investment worth € 13 billion for infrastructure projects in the Eastern Partnership countries.
Anaklia Port and its importance for Georgia
In 2016, Anaklia Development Consortium was authorized to launch the construction of Anaklia Port.
Cryptocurrency mining threatens electrical network in Abkhazia
In the breakaway region of Akbhazia rampant cryptocurrency mining is threatening the shaky electrical network, reports an article of the news portal EuroNet.
Caucasus Wine University to be opened in Gurjaani
In the Kakheti region a new viticulture campus of the Caucasus University is in the process of planning.
Photos describing life of the poorest in Georgia
Fight with poverty should be among top priorities of every government in every country.
Training farmers to rescue the organic hazelnut production in Georgia
Even drizzling rain and unpleasant gusts of wind can’t prevent the farmers from coming and participating in the agricultural training.
Bleak times for organic farmers in Georgia – but there is hope
Organic hazelnut production is a delicate plant in Georgia that has emerged just a couple of years ago. Various pests, among them the Asian stink bug Parosana, trouble hazelnut farmers and menace their livelihood – even before their businesses could really take off.
Hybrid car imports are going through the roof in Georgia
Thanks to their fuel economy, the popularity of hybrid cars is increasing in Georgia, where fuel affordability is low and prices for fuel are unstable.
The New Year offer from MAQRO Construction - Apartments with unbelievable discounts and the parking spaces for FREE!
Location, green yard, spaces for various needs, experience of the construction company and parking space are the main important criteria for potential buyers of apartments.
Interview with the co-founder of Kiwi Vegan Café – the first vegan place in Tbilisi
Behind the Kiwi Vegan Café stands a group of activists who wants to raise Georgian’s awareness for animal rights and welfare.
Biblusi opens first shop for tourists - Georgian
The largest book shop in Georgia Biblusi opens the first shop specially designated to the needs and interests of tourists and named it Georgian.
Georgia improves by five ranks in the Prosperity Index
In the overall Prosperity Index rankings, Georgia has climbed by 5 positions from 85 to 80 when compared to last year. As such, Georgia is the best performing country in the CIS zone.
The future is bright for electric cars in Georgia
The numerous hybrid cars in the streets of Tbilisi cannot be overlooked. Entrepreneur Sulkhan Gvalia calls them “pagers”, referring to the predecessor of mobile phones.
Georgia’s fight against the big tiny enemy – Asian Parosana
It’s a tiny creature, but the harm it did to the Georgian agriculture sector was and still is immense.
New cable route: from Kobi to Gudauri in 15 minutes
On the 15th of December, cable transport is scheduled to be opened connecting Kobi and Gudauri.
Tourist boom in Gudauri – majority of hotels are booked by foreigners
Gudauri is among the most popular winter resorts in Georgia.
Medical tourism increases in Georgia
In the last 9 months, Georgia was visited by 19 500 foreigners for medical and recovery purposes.
Doing business in Georgia has become easier than in America
According to the Doing Business 2019 report published by the World Bank, Georgia ranked 6th among 190 countries in terms of simplicity of doing business. This was an improvement over two ranks compared to last year.
Problems that foreigners frequently face in Georgia
The importance of Georgia as a tourism hub is growing year after year.
Tbilisi TV Broadcasting Tower – Better than the Eiffel Tower?
It is planned to renovate the Tbilisi TV Broadcasting Tower, one of the landmarks in the capital.
Georgian Fusion Menu by The Biltmore Hotel Tbilisi
5,895,914 international visitors have visited Georgia between January and August of 2018. Compared to the previous year the number has increased by 12.2 per cent.
Advertising of gambling and lucrative games may become banned in Georgia
Advertising of gambling and lucrative games may become banned in Georgia. Those who violate the new rule would be fined GEL 10 000.
Lebanese café-lounge Beirut opens in Tbilisi
What is necessary to organize an unforgettable event? – Fun, emotions, lots of surprises, good music and delicious menu.
PHOTO OF THE DAY
GEL Exchange Rate
Convertor
18.02.2019
19.02.2019
USD
1
USD
2.6413
2.6404
EUR
1
EUR
2.9791
2.9908
GBP
1
GBP
3.3851
3.4130
RUB
100
RUB
3.9608
3.9898
Other Stories
Recently Toyota rolled out Global Campaign under this slogan that reflects the Olympic and Paralympic Spirit of Encouragement,
A couple from Switzerland combines Swiss tradition and technology with Georgian products. Their cheese is made in the Georgian mountains and sold in local stores and hotels.
It has been more than five years since the residents of Lilo village, near Tbilisi, cannot open their windows.
63 000 GEL was received by the Georgian Agro Export Group which is just a small part of the European Neighbourhood Programme for Agricultural and Rural development.
Georgian entrepreneur Guka Tavberidze, who runs his own business in the UK and does it quite well, has been invited by BBC
The grand opening of 7-star The Biltmore Hotel Tbilisi took place in Georgia’s capital on July 31.
DUSHETI, Georgia – The Georgian government and the World Bank will allocate USD 5.6 million (12 million GEL) to fund
A new Georgian clothing brand named Person has emerged in Georgian market.
Georgia is in the midst of an economic maelstrom, Euronews reports.
Situation at Georgia’s mineral water market is interesting: over the last year, the volume of export has grown by 56 percent. According to “GeoStat”, over $114 million worth of mineral water was sold
GEL Exchange
USD
1
USD
2.6404
EUR
1
EUR
2.9908
GBP
1
GBP
3.4130
RUB
100
RUB
3.9898