May 20, 2024 2 min read


Bulgaria Bans Gambling Ads; Prohibits Casinos in Underpopulated Areas

Adding to the changes, the new bill will prevent people who receive social assistance from exiting the country’s self-exclusion scheme

After months of discussions, Bulgaria has finally implemented a ban on gambling ads. The measure was signed into law by president Rumen Radev, preventing gambling companies from freely marketing their products.

Under the new ad regime, operators are unable to promote their products across all forms of media. The controversial ban still allows gambling companies to advertise their products on billboards that are located at least 100 meters away from schools. Ads on the facades of gaming halls also remain legal. Another noteworthy exception from the rules is TV broadcasts of national lottery draws.

All permitted gambling ads must include safer gambling messaging that occupies at least 10% of the ad space.

Operators who violate the new rules on gambling ads risk a fine of up to BGN 50,000 (approximately $27,815). Repeat offenders may have their license revoked, authorities warn.

An overwhelming majority of MPs (198) voted in favor of the bill in spite of strong opposition from gambling and media companies in the country.

The Bill Introduces Additional Rules

In addition to prohibiting many forms of gambling advertisement, the bill also prohibits slot games and casino gaming in areas with populations of fewer than 10,000 people. A noteworthy exception to this rule will be national resorts and border areas.

Additionally, companies wishing to apply for slot machine licenses must now hold a minimum capital of at least BGN 750,000/$417,000 (previously BGN 500,000/$278,000). In addition, operators will have to pay a BGN 100,000 ($55,600) social responsibility fee to offer online gambling. Half of this money will fuel problem gambling treatment organizations in the country.

Adding to the changes, the new bill will prevent people who receive social assistance from exiting the country’s self-exclusion scheme.

The new rules seek to mitigate the harm caused by gambling and protect local players from excessive play. The National Revenue Agency (NRA) which oversees gambling in the country will be responsible for enforcing the rules and punishing offenders.


Angel has a passion for all forms of writing, be it fiction or nonfiction. His curious nature gives him an ace up his sleeve when researching a new topic. Angel’s thirst for knowledge, paired with adaptability, always helps him find his way around.

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