Casinos debut amid talk of new zones

Russia’s southern and western gaming zones have seen a flurry of activity over the past few months, while reports have emerged of new areas being considered for casino investment. Moscow designated four zones for casino gambling in 2009 in remote locations on the fringes of the country and outlawed gambling anywhere else. Since then, the zones have been expanded to six to include the Crimea and Sochi, the home of the 2014 Winter Olympics. While one of the original zones — Azov City — is expected to be closed down. According to reports more zones may be on the cards, raising question marks over the shifting sands of Russian regulation for foreign investors. Initially, when adopting the law in 2007 the authorities pledged to not introduce changes to the locations of the zones for the next 10 years. Russian gambling expert Nikolai Oganezov, who previously chaired one of Russia’s self-regulating organizations –...

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