Main Casino Licenses (34) Ministry of Finance of Macedonia

Macedonian Online Casino Licence

The regulatory body of the Republic of North Macedonia is the Ministry of Finance [1]. They are governed by the Law on Games and Fun Games [2] in effect from 26/09/2016. Regulation and control are carried out in accordance with the Law for Inspection Supervision [3] in force from 22/05/2019, and the Law on Tax Procedure [4] which entered into force on 27/12/2019.

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Licence Types

Gambling is considered to be any type of games in which the participants have equal opportunities to win by placing a bet, and the outcome is more dependent on chance.

In accordance with the Law, the following are allowed:

  • slot machines
  • traditional, instant, prize and express lotteries
  • bingo, loto, tombola, fonto and keno
  • sports or casual betting
  • traditional casino games (roulette, blackjack, craps)
  • club and video games

In Macedonia a commercial enterprise where at least 51% is owned by the Republic can become a licence holder.

The Ministry establishes:

  • the order of work and use of the technical and material base
  • the way a web resource is connected and exchanges data with the supervisory information system of the State Revenue Service

After issuing a licence, the licensee receives documents from the State Revenue Service of Macedonia confirming that their technical, software and material resources meet the requirements.

The Government of the Republic of Macedonia issues two types of licences:

  1. For the Manufacturer, Owner or authorised Manager of an online gambling platform.
  2. For the organiser of Internet gambling.

Online casino licences are valid for 4 years.

A certificate is issued for the hardware and software platform (hosting centre), which the licence holders use to register financial and data transactions in Macedonia.

Jurisdiction and Authority

The Ministry of Finance of Macedonia regulates the gambling market within the territory of the Republic. Licensing decisions for commercial enterprises can be made and agreed by the Government. The regulatory authorities of the Republic closely interact with EU countries in the framework of international cooperation and in order to prevent gambling addiction.

Arbitration and Player Protection

The Republic of Macedonia does not guarantee players' winnings. The organiser of the licensed online platform is responsible for guaranteeing the payments to users.

Online casino websites have to prominently display a warning about the consequences of addiction to gambling and provide links to resources to help gambling addicts.

The licensee must provide registered users with the opportunity to file a claim or complaint. The player will be notified of the decision on the appeal in writing and the correspondence needs to be stored on the server of the licence holder.

The Ministry registers and investigates user complaints, informing organisers and players about the decision in writing.

Payments to Players

The winning fund in lottery games must be at least 50% of the total value of all issued tickets or coupons.

Slot machines must be programmed so that the total number of winning combinations provides players with a return of at least 87% of the value of payments for participation in gambling entertainment.

How to Get a Licence in Macedonia

Companies that have registered their intention to conduct a gambling business in the Republic's Trade Register can apply for a licence. They have no more than six months from the date of registration of the intention to apply for a licence.

The basic capital of the company must be at least 40,000 euros and the responsible persons must reside in Macedonia.

The licence application contains:

  • the act of establishing a trading company
  • documents for ownership or lease of hosting for hosting a casino website
  • a hardware and software compliance report received from laboratories that have been certified and recognised by the Ministry from Macedonia or the European Union/EEA states/USA

The Ministry verifies the completeness and accuracy of the information provided by accessing:

  • documents on registration of a commercial organisation in the Central Register of the Republic of Macedonia
  • information about crimes committed by a legal entity in the Register of Fines
  • data on the financial condition of the company from the previous years´ annual report

If any financial, administrative or criminal offence data is missing, an authorised employee of the Ministry will request it within 3 days from the date the application was received.

A decision on an application will take 30 days.

Licence holders must have a bank guarantee of at least 50,000 euros while their licence is valid.

Taxes and Fees

For the issuance of a Manufacturer's Licence a fee of 25,000 euros must be paid. The fee for the issuance of an Online Gambling Licence is 50,000 euros. These amounts need to be converted into MKD at the average exchange rate of the National Bank of Macedonia on the date of payment.

Gambling tax is paid monthly in the amount of 0.5% of the total amount of payments received.

The licensee is required to pay 50% of the annual licence fee within 15 days from the date the licence is issued. The remaining 50% needs to be paid in equal installments throughout the validity period of the licence.

Maturity dates are specified on the licence and if the licensee does not pay the agreed fees, the licence will be cancelled.

Profit tax and dividend tax rates are 10% each and VAT is 18%.

FAQ
In what cases does a licensee have the right to refuse a player to participate in online games?

The organisers have the right to prohibit the participation of registered players if:

  • the frequency of play suggests they are dependent on gambling
  • it appears they are spending excessively and in a way that could cause harm to themselves or other family members

Any payments in excess of the equivalent of 3,000 euro are subject to verification and registration.

Can foreign companies become shareholders of licence holders?

Yes, but the share of ownership of the Republic of Macedonia in the joint venture must be at least 51%.

How long is the licence for online gambling in Macedonia issued?

The licence is valid for 4 years.