The gambling entertainment industry in Romania is developing at a rapid pace. This was facilitated by the legalization of the gambling business at the legislative level. According to statistics, more than 55% of Romanian citizens have at least one experience in gambling.
In 2015, the activity of online casinos was legalized at the legislative level. But state bodies continue to actively work on the creation of new legal acts, as well as additions and amendments to existing laws. This allows you to create more favorable conditions for the development of the gambling business.
About Oficiului Național pentru Jocuri de Noroc
Romania is one of those European countries in which gambling is legalized at the legislative level. On this page you can find online casinos that operate under the license of the Official National Gaming Office of Romania, so they can guarantee their players fair payouts, safety and reliability.
But, despite the ratification of many regulations and laws, online gambling has not yet been regulated at the proper level. The 2014 law confirms that online casinos can carry out legal activities on the territory of Romania. But there is one catch. Only those operators who have a land-based casino in the territory of this state will be able to obtain a license from Oficiului Național pentru Jocuri de Noroc. Therefore, it is quite difficult for most European operators of international importance to obtain permission to conduct gambling activities in Romania.
The Gambling Law, issued in 2014, will legalize gambling activities in the territory of this jurisdiction. In order to regulate the gambling entertainment industry, a special state body was created – Oficiului Național pentru Jocuri de Noroc. This Commission is responsible for issuing licenses, as well as monitoring the quality of services provided to players.
Not every interested operator will be able to apply for this license. License holders from Oficiului Național pentru Jocuri de Noroc will be able to become only those operators who already have a land-based casino in Romania. Online casinos whose main office and servers are located on the territory of other states cannot provide their services to residents of Romania. Therefore, it is not as easy for online casino operators to obtain a license as it might seem at first glance.
It is also worth mentioning that Oficiului Național pentru Jocuri de Noroc published a special black list on their official website. It presented online casinos, the activities of which this regulator considers unsafe. Although many of these operators are quite popular, their clients are millions of players from all over the world. There are currently more than a dozen online casinos licensed by Oficiului Național pentru Jocuri de Noroc.
The gambling industry in Romania has a long history. Back in 1906, the first national lottery, Lottery Romana, began its activities. With the coming to power of Nicolae Ceausescu, gambling was banned. But after his power was overthrown in 1990, gambling activity again began to develop on legal ambushes.
In 1991, the Austrian company Casino Austria opened the first casino in Romania. This was the first impetus for the active development of the gambling entertainment industry in this jurisdiction. Consider the key points in the development of the gambling business in Romania:
- In 1992, the Gambling Business Commission began its activities. This organization was created to control the activities of all gambling establishments in Romania;
- In 1993, the Law “On Taxation of Gambling Establishments” was ratified;
- Since 1998, licensing of all gambling establishments in the country has become mandatory. This requirement was attached by the Law “On Regulation of the Gambling Business”;
- Since 1999, for the premises used for the operation of casinos and other gambling venues, special requirements regarding the size and area have been used;
- In 2003, a scheme for attracting foreign investors was developed at the state level. At the legislative level, the activities of bookmakers and the work of betting shops were legalized.
Over the years, dozens of different laws and regulations have been issued that regulate the activities of gambling establishments. In addition to such government regulations, the activities of the gambling industry are also regulated by the orders, instructions and decisions of the National Office of Gambling.
At the legislative level, the regulation of the activities of land-based gambling establishments and gambling sites on the Internet has significant differences. The legalization of gambling entertainment on the Internet is much slower. The first online casinos in Romania started operating in 2008. But only since 2015, their activities have become legal.
In 2009, there were already attempts to legalize gambling sites on the Internet at the legislative level. Many gambling sites have been operating on Romanian servers since that time. The bill was submitted to the European Commission for consideration, but many shortcomings and shortcomings were found in it. Because of this, work was suspended.
The next attempts to legalize online gambling took place in 2011. Representatives of the Commission of the European Union decided that the legislative framework of this state does not fully comply with the norms and requirements of the EU.
In 2015, work on the legalization of the gambling business on the Internet was resumed. It was this year that a number of laws were adopted, thanks to which online casino operators were finally able to operate legally in Romania. The framework for the activities of international operators was defined, and a three-tier taxation system was developed.
All online casino operators that have been operating since 2009 have received an offer to obtain a license for official work in Romania. They had to pay a tax of 20% on all income received during these years of illegal work.
Oficiul Național pentru Jocuri de Noroc is the gambling regulator in Romania
In the same year, Oficiul Național pentru Jocuri de Noroc, ONJN began its activities. Thanks to the creation of such an official regulator, the state was able to fully centralize and control gambling activities carried out on online platforms. The Oficiul Național pentru Jocuri de Noroc is entrusted with the following functions:
- Issuance of licenses to operators that carry out their activities on the Internet;
- Control and regulation of online casino activities in Romania;
- Analysis of trends in the European gambling industry on the Internet.
The head of this state body is Cristinela Nistor. She believes that special attention should be paid to the development of new provisions, with the help of which it is possible to bring Romanian legislation into line with European norms. And this, in turn, will make the online gambling industry a major source of revenue for the state budget.
Such active work has brought satisfactory results. In 2016, new rules for online gambling operators were published. In accordance with the current regulations, licensees of Oficiul Național pentru Jocuri de Noroc must meet the following requirements:
- All providers are required to be citizens of Romania or the European Union, as well as to have the appropriate permission to carry out their activities;
- The exact time frame, payment methods and penalties were determined in case of violation of the indicated requirements;
- The websites of all online casinos must clearly state the sizes of bets, winnings, limits and percentages in Romanian.
Not everyone reacted positively to the introduction of such innovations. Many operators did not meet such stringent requirements, so their licenses were revoked. Many operators had to leave the Romanian gambling market. One such company was William Hill.
But not everything is as bad as it might seem at first glance. Many responsible and reliable operators have fulfilled all the new conditions and were able to obtain a license from Oficiul Național pentru Jocuri de Noroc. In addition, many popular and sought-after online casino operators express their desire to obtain a Romanian gambling license.
The procedure for obtaining a gambling license
To date, the following types of gambling entertainment are subject to licensing in Romania:
- slot machines;
- table card games;
- sports betting;
- online casino games.
In order to obtain a gambling license, online casino operators must meet the tough and stringent requirements of the Oficiul Național pentru Jocuri de Noroc. This regulatory body issues several types of licenses depending on the type of services provided. Each gambling entertainment will require a separate official gambling license. In order to obtain a license from Oficiul Național pentru Jocuri de Noroc, operators will need to provide the following documentation package:
- Application for a license;
- Official confirmation of the lease or purchase of the premises in which the main office and the operator’s server will be located;
- Official confirmation of successful completion of a technical check for compliance with applicable requirements;
- Police clearance certificate from all shareholders and directors of the company;
- Documentary confirmation of the “purity” of the origin of the start-up capital;
- Certificate of payment of taxes and the absence of debts to the state.
In addition, each online casino operator undertakes to form a special guarantee fund for winnings. It is mandatory to provide official confirmation of the originality and good technical condition of all equipment and software. It is important to take into account that operators need to obtain not only a general license to operate, but also a separate license for each gambling machine.
License types Oficiul Național pentru Jocuri de Noroc
Depending on the type of activity of gambling establishments, Oficiul Național pentru Jocuri de Noroc deals with the execution and issuance of the following types of licenses:
- License to operate land-based casinos. Such permission to conduct gambling activities is issued for 10 years. All licensees are required to pay annual fees. Poker club owners are required to pay an annual fee of 15,000 euros, and casino operators – 20,000 euros. In addition to the license fee, it is also mandatory to pay an annual fee to the Public Fund for Responsible Gaming;
- Online casino license. The attachment to the license will provide a list of games that online casino operators can play. This type of license is also issued for 10 years. But the size of the annual membership fee will already depend on the size of the profit of the online casino. Their size will be 60,000 euros with a turnover of 500,000 euros, or 120,000 euros – with a total profit of over 10,000,000 euros.
- License for the supply of content, platforms, software.
Gambling Access Restrictions
Despite the legalization of the gambling business, there are severe restrictions in Romania. In particular, only adults who have reached the age of 18 are allowed to play.
Moreover, according to the rules introduced in 2016, operators are obliged to take care of the protection of minors:
- billboards are not allowed to be installed near educational institutions;
- marketing materials contain an indication that minors are not allowed to participate in gambling;
- Online casinos have strict account verification procedures.
All gambling establishments and portals are required to cooperate with the Public Fund for Responsible Gaming and monitor the signs of a possible gambling addiction among visitors.
Reports from the European Gaming Commission confirm that the influx of online casino operators who want to operate in Romania is rapidly increasing. To date, about 20 companies are holders of a temporary gambling license. And they all want to get a permanent license from Oficiul Național pentru Jocuri de Noroc in the future. The list of license applicants is constantly growing. On this page, you will be able to find online casinos that have received Oficiul Național pentru Jocuri de Noroc license and enjoy a safe and fun gaming experience.