April 30, 2024 3 min read


Uzbekistan to Legalize Gambling, Lotteries and Sports Betting

A landmark decree by Uzbekistan President Shavkat Mirziyoyev marks a drastic shift in the country’s gambling policy, which previously prohibited all games of chance

Starting 1 January 2025, Uzbekistan will witness a milestone shift in its gaming and betting landscape as it legalizes online gambling, lotteries, and sports betting. This move, introduced by a presidential decree, aims to regulate these activities, combat illegal operators, and generate revenue for the state while protecting consumers from gambling harm.

Initial Plans Seem Promising

Under the new regulations, the National Agency for Prospective Projects (NAPP) will issue licenses for organizing risk-based games, lotteries, online gaming, and bookmaking activities conducted on the Internet. These licenses will ensure that activities are conducted responsibly and transparently, with strict age restrictions requiring participants to be 18 years or older.

Newly established taxation procedures envision legal entities engaged in these activities paying a 4% tax rate on their total income after deducting paid winnings and returned bets. Individuals, however, will be exempt from income tax on their winnings from licensed activities. These rates are significantly lower than many other jurisdictions and likely aim to foster a competitive and sustainable market.

To ensure compliance with legal regulations and prevent illicit activities such as money laundering and terrorism financing, monitoring and control responsibilities have been assigned to the NAPP and the General Prosecutor’s Office. The Department for Combating Tax and Currency Crimes will also provide oversight, helping maintain the integrity of the gaming industry.

Legalized Gambling Can Bring Substantial Benefits

The decision to legalize these activities comes amidst concerns about the prevalence of illegal gambling, which exposes participants to risks such as fraud and financial losses. By bringing these activities under legal oversight, Uzbekistan aims to protect its citizens by channeling them towards regulated offerings. The country also hopes to tap into the gaming sector’s vast economic potential, bolstering community-focused initiatives.

News outlet The Times of Central Asia highlighted the stance of Davron Faiziev, press secretary of the Uzbekistan Football Association. He supported legalizing betting activities, emphasizing that they would contribute to the sports sector through sponsorships. He drew parallels to other countries where high-profile operators actively supported sports teams, bolstering their competitiveness. 

By banning betting activities, we lose a lot. First of all, a large flow of funds goes to other countries.

Davron Faiziev, Uzbekistan Football Association  press secretary

As Uzbekistan embraces legalized gambling and betting, it anticipates positive outcomes for its economy and society, fostering responsible participation and contributing to the growth of sectors such as sports and entertainment. The country will soon reveal its licensing conditions, shedding further light on its vision for a thriving gambling industry.

Deyan is an experienced writer, analyst, and seeker of forbidden lore. He has approximate knowledge about many things, which he is always willing to apply when researching and preparing his articles. With a degree in Copy-editing and Proofreading, Deyan is able to ensure that his work writing for GamblingNews is always up to scratch.

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