Monday, June 24, 2024

Montenegro: operators question government advance with gambling payments ban

Must read

The government has approved amendments that would ban electronic payments.

Montenegro.- The gambling industry has questioned a move by the government of Montenegro to advance with a proposed ban on electronic payments for gambling. The government has approved amendments to Article 68f of the Gambling Act to prohibit e-banking, instant payment systems and mobile payment services like PayPal and Apple Pay, requiring customers to instead transfer funds to online gambling accounts at betting shops or by card at a betting shop terminal.

Montenegro has been aiming to enhance its anti-money-laundering (AML) compliance as it eyes European Union (EU) entry due to concerns raised by the Council of Europe’s financial intelligence monitor, Moneyval. However, gambling operators argue that the payment restrictions go against AML recommendations and breach European Union competition rules. 

Jovana Klisić of trade body MontenegroBet said the ban would harm operational efficiency and jeopardise employment. A petition against the measures received 25,000 signatures in five days back in March. 

MontenegroBet says it is working with international institutions to draw attention to the negative impacts of the rules and their incompatibility with EU directives. Bodies such as Moneyval and the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) have pushed for a reduction in cash transactions to reduce money laundering risks.

Latest article