The Ministry of Finance has submitted a draft bill to the EU Commission for clearance and shall apply to all forms of online betting and gaming other than horse racing, for which a separate bill shall be prepared.
The proposed statute shall establish a Cypriot Betting Authority to regulate the gambling industry, which shall be responsible for accepting, reviewing and deciding over applications for relevant licences and permits.
The key provisions envisaged are:
- Applicants must be companies limited by shares incorporated in Cyprus or abroad with the sole object of conducting collective gambling and with an issued and paid-up capital of at least €500.000.
- Providers of gambling services must be registered with the National Betting Authority.
- Players must be over 18 years of age and must hold a duly granted account with a licensed provider of gambling services.
- Bets may be placed only via credit cards, debit cards, electronic transfers, cheques and other means approved by the proposed Betting Authority, with strict limits on transaction charges.
- The provider shall be obliged to maintain player’s accounts and to credit all amounts due to the registered player.
- Providers will be liable to a betting tax at the rate of 10% over the amounts staked.
- Providers are obliged to maintain a web page in which the name of company, the address, the licence details must appear together with links to web pages of organisations providing help against addiction and other gambling-related disorders.