B2C Gambling License
Obtaining Romania Gambling License, tax consultancy & planning, legal strategy, consultancy, legal opinions & reports, and incorporating companies in European jurisdictions without requiring the licensing of related activities.
Romania Remote Gambling License
A Supervisory Committee within the ONJN is assessing the applications and granting the particular licenses/authorizations required by the law.
Romania is the 12th largest country of the European Union with a total area of 238,397 square kilometers. Located at the crossroads of Central, Eastern, and Southeastern Europe. It borders the Black Sea to the southeast, Bulgaria to the south, Ukraine to the north, Hungary to the west, Serbia to the southwest, and Moldova to the east.
According to the World Bank, Romania is a high-income country with a mixed economy. Romania is a net exporter of electrical energy and 48th worldwide in terms of the consumption of electric energy.
According to Bloomberg, in 2013 Romania ranked 5th in the world for Internet speeds. According to The Independent, it ranks number 1 in Europe, with Timișoara ranked among the highest in the world. Tourism is a significant contributor to the Romanian economy, generating around 5% of GDP. In 2014, Romania had 32,500 companies that were active in the HORECA industry, with a total turnover of EUR 2.6 billion. The number of tourists has been steadily rising, reaching 9.33 million foreign tourists in 2016, according to the Worldbank.
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In recent years, Romania has emerged as an attractive destination for the gambling industry, offering a well-regulated and thriving market. The country provides various gambling licenses, including Class 1 licenses, which allow operators to offer online gambling services. This article aims to guide aspiring gambling operators through the process of obtaining a Class 1 gambling license in Romania.
Since 2000, Romania attracted increasing amounts of foreign investments and is the largest investment destination in Southeastern and Central Europe. The online gaming industry is very well regulated and in line with legislative models in the EU, but with better taxation and many extra advantages. The Romanian gambling market is a rapidly growing enterprise, emerging as an attractive European destination for prominent international operators.
In Romania, the Authority responsible for regulating the gambling industry is the ONJN (Oficiul Național Pentru Jocuri de Noroc). On the 24th of February 2016, Romania’s Government finalized and adopted detailed technical and operational regulations for the gambling industry regarding both online and land-based companies. A Supervisory Committee within the ONJN is assessing the applications and grants the particular licenses/authorizations required by the law.
We can help you obtain your Class 1 Romanian Gaming License
What sets our service apart from others?
With Szilaghi Consulting, obtaining your Class 1 Romanian Gambling license is hassle-free. We cover a wide range of e-gaming activities, including sports betting, poker, roulette, blackjack, baccarat, bingo, and lottery. Our experts will assist you in establishing the required company structure for license registration, ensuring a seamless operation. We understand the importance of smooth payment processing, so we help you set up reliable merchant accounts with trusted European EMI service providers. This enables secure deposits and withdrawals, providing a convenient experience for your players. Trust Szilaghi Consulting to navigate the licensing process and establish a thriving online gambling business in Romania.
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Szilaghi Consulting is a leading provider of Class 1 Romanian Gaming license services
Familiarize Yourself with the Legal Framework
Before delving into the licensing process, it is crucial to have a solid understanding of Romania’s gambling regulations. The primary legislation governing gambling activities in the country is Law No. 124/2015 on gambling. Familiarize yourself with the key provisions of this law, including the licensing requirements, obligations, and restrictions imposed on operators.
The Romanian legislation which impacts gambling activities comprises the following main normative acts:
- Government Emergency Ordinance no. 77/2009 on the organization and operation of games of chance (“GEO no. 77/2009”);
- Government Decision no. 111/2016 for the approval of the Methodological Norms for implementation of GEO no. 77/2009 (the “Secondary Legislation”);
- Government Emergency Ordinance no. 20/2013 on the organization and functioning of the National Gambling Office and for the modification and supplementation of GEO no. 77/2009;
- Government Decision no. 298/2013 on the organization and functioning of the National Gambling Office;
- Law no. 227/2015 regarding the Fiscal Code (“Romanian Fiscal Code”);
- Law no. 207/2015 on the Fiscal Procedure Code;
- The order issued by the President of the National Gambling Office no. 47/2016 for the approval of the content, reports, and access to information transmitted by remote gambling operators to the National Gambling Office;
- The order issued by the President of the National Gambling Office no. 48/2016 for the approval of the procedure for fulfilling the conditions for connecting land-based slot machines and betting-type games of chance; and
- The order issued by the President of the National Gambling Office no. 93/2016 for the approval of the mandatory requirements for certification and audit of the remote gambling systems;
- The order issued by the President of the National Gambling Office no. 89/2018 regarding the unitary interpretation of the provisions of point 7 of the Annex to Order no. 48/2016 for the approval of the procedure for fulfilling the conditions for connecting land-based slot machines and betting-type games of chance;
- The order issued by the President of the National Gambling Office no. 179/2018 regarding the approval of the model of monthly declaration as a standard form for the revenues realized by the gambling operators which carry out gambling activities according to art. 10 para. (1) of GEO no. 77/2009;
- Government Emergency Ordinance no. 114/2018 on the establishment of measures in the field of public investments and fiscal-budgetary measures, for the modification and completion of certain normative acts and for the extension of certain deadlines (“GEO no. 114/2018”);
- The order issued by the President of the National Gambling Office no. 38/2019 for the approval of the method of calculation of the monthly tax provided by art. 53 of GEO no. 114/2018, and for the modification of Annex no. 8 to Order no. 179/2018 issued by the President of the National Gambling Office;
- The order issued by the President of the National Gambling Office no. 400/2019 for the approval of the draft decision regarding the accessory budgetary obligations representing interest and penalties for delay, the procedure regarding the notification of economic operators – licensed gambling organizers, and the draft of the payment notification for the annual contribution provided by art. 10 para. (4) of Government Emergency Ordinance no. 77/2009 on the organization and operation of games of chance, further amended through Order no. 434/2019;
- Law no. 129/2019 for preventing and combatting money laundering and terrorist financing, as well as for modifying and completing normative acts;
- The decision issued by the National Audiovisual Council no. 614 of 11 June 2019 for amending and completing Decision no. 220/2011 regarding the Code of Regulation of Audiovisual Content;
- The order issued by the President of the National Gambling Office no. 404/2020 for the approval of the Minimum technical conditions for verification of the gambling means, amended and supplemented through Order no. 86/2021; and
- Government Emergency Ordinance no. 48/2020 regarding certain financial-fiscal measures. As a matter of principle, the Romanian regulation permits the offering of any of the Relevant Products on the Romanian market, both in land-based and digital/online forms, provided that the necessary licenses and authorization (s) is obtained by the operator intending to offer the respective Relevant Product.
- Government Ordinance no. 15/2022 regarding the modification of the licensing and authorization fees of gambling organizers.
The social/skill games are not expressly regulated under the Romanian gambling legislation and should not normally be qualified as games of chance. Thus, in accordance with GEO no. 77/2009, a game of chance is defined as a product that cumulatively meets the following characteristics:
- the charging of a participation fee;
- the game is based on the random selection of results;
- monetary winnings; and
- public offering of the respective game by the organizer to the participants.
Therefore, any game that lacks one (or several) of the mandatory elements provided by the legal definition should not be qualified as a game of chance and, in principle, should not be permitted in Romania without obtaining the licenses and authorization(s) imposed by the gambling regulation.
Company Registration and Corporate Requirements
To apply for a Class 1 gambling license in Romania, you must establish a legal entity registered within the country. Ensure that your company complies with all the corporate requirements, including having a registered office in Romania, appointing a local representative, and fulfilling any other obligations prescribed by law.
The requirements imposed by the ONJN include:
- Residence in Romania. Operators wishing to offer their services to Romanian gamblers must be residents of Romania, EU or EEA and they must obtain the relevant licenses and authorizations from the ONJN. In case the company is a foreign entity, it must appoint a local authorized representative, whose domicile is in Romania, to deal with the competent authorities in the country and have the power to conclude contracts on its behalf
- Opening of a bank account with one of the banks in Romania where the operator would need to deposit the players’ money. Licensed remote gaming operators will only be allowed to make payments to players through the payment processors that have been approved by the ONJN
- Requirements regarding the minimum share capital of the company depending on the type of game it offers
- A monthly declaration giving details regarding income from games of chance as well as the fees due will have to be submitted to the ONJN on a standard form
- Compliance with the principles regarding the protection of minors as well as with the content of the promotional material used and the locations where they can be displayed
Prepare the Required Documentation
To initiate the licensing process, you will need to prepare a comprehensive set of documentation. The exact requirements may vary slightly depending on the specific circumstances, but generally, the following documents are typically required:
- Application form: Obtain the official application form from the Romanian National Gambling Office (ONJN) and complete it accurately, providing all the requested information.
- Company documents: Include copies of your company’s Articles of Association, Memorandum of Association, and Certificate of Incorporation.
- Shareholder information: Provide details of all shareholders, including their identities, ownership percentages, and any relevant supporting documents.
- Business plan: Draft a detailed business plan outlining your proposed gambling activities, marketing strategies, responsible gambling measures, and financial projections.
- Technical specifications: Prepare a comprehensive description of your gambling software, systems, security protocols, and data protection measures.
- Proof of funds: Demonstrate that you have sufficient financial resources to operate a gambling business by submitting bank statements or other acceptable financial documents.
- Compliance policies: Develop robust policies and procedures for anti-money laundering (AML), responsible gambling, and data protection, ensuring compliance with Romanian regulations.
- Integrity certifications: Obtain integrity certifications for your software and systems from reputable testing laboratories.
Pay the Application Fee
To initiate the licensing process, you must pay the application fee as determined by the ONJN. Ensure that you have the necessary funds available to cover this fee, as it is non-refundable.
Licensing and authorization fees
|I. Gambling organizer’s license fees (annual)|
|Lottery games:||EUR 135 000|
|Mutual betting:||EUR 54 000|
|Fixed-rate betting:||EUR 100 000|
|Counterpart betting:||EUR 100 000|
|Games of chance characteristic of casinos:||EUR 115 000|
|Games of chance characteristic of poker clubs:||EUR 17 500|
|Slot machine-type games:||EUR 75 000|
|Bingo games taking place in gambling halls:||EUR 11 500|
|Bingo games of chance organized via television network systems:||EUR 90 000|
|Remote games of chance, there are three categories of license as follow:|
|1st Class Licence: This is granted to operators organizing remote games of chance, who have direct contracts with players, and is calculated according to the organizer’s turnover.|
Up to 500,000 euros/year
Over 10,000,000 euros/year
EUR 15 600
EUR 62 400
EUR 156 000
EUR 249 000
EUR 312 000
|2nd Class Licence: for legal persons involved in the field of traditional and remote games of chance, as well as conformity evaluation bodies. This is subject to a fee of EUR 9,500/ year.|
|3rd Class Licence: for the State monopoly remote games provided for in Article 10(1)(h) of the Emergency Ordinance.|
|Poker festivals||EUR 10 000|
|Temporary casino-type games (valid three months)||EUR 25 000|
|Temporary slot machine-type games (valid three months)||EUR 6 500|
|Temporary bingo-type games in halls (valid three months)||EUR 3 000|
|Tombola type of games – traditional game||EUR 15 000|
|Video lottery game – traditional game||EUR 60 000|
|Gambling operator’s authorization fees (annual)|
|Traditional lottery-type games:||EUR 200 000|
|Mutual betting – traditional: 21 % of the organizer’s income from games of chance, as defined in Article 11 of this Emergency Ordinance, but not less than:||EUR 100 000|
|Fixed-rate betting – traditional: 18 % of the organizer’s income from games of chance, as defined in Article 11 of this Emergency Ordinance, but not less than:||EUR 100 000|
|Counterpart betting – traditional: 21 % of the organizer’s income from games of chance, as defined in Article 11 of this Emergency Ordinance, but not less than:||EUR 100 000|
|Games of chance characteristic of casinos:|
|for each table, in the city of Bucharest:||EUR 65 000|
|for each table, in other locations than the city of Bucharest:||EUR 35 000|
|for each premises, in the city of Bucharest:||EUR 75 000|
|for each premises, in locations other than the city of Bucharest:||EUR 35 000|
|Each slot machine-type piece of gaming equipment:|
|Slot machine Class A||EUR 4 600|
|Electronic devices offering limited-risk winnings, Class B||EUR 2 000|
|Bingo games taking place in gambling halls:||EUR 7 000|
|for each hall, as well as 5 % of the nominal value of cards purchased from Imprimeria Naţională SA, the Romanian National Printing Company, which is paid in advance to the State Treasury; a payment order endorsed by the treasury is presented when the cards are collected|
|Bingo games of chance organized via television network systems: 23 % of the organizer’s income, as defined in Article 11 of this Emergency Ordinance, but not less than EUR 130 000|
|1st Class remote games of chance: 23 % of the organizer’s income from games of chance, as they are defined in Article 11 of this Emergency Ordinance but no less than EUR 120 000|
|3rd Class remote games of chance: 23 % of the organizer’s income from games of chance, as they are defined in Article 11 of this Emergency Ordinance but no less than EUR 115 000|
|Poker festivals||EUR 25 000|
|Temporary casino-type games (valid three months)||EUR 20 000|
|Temporary Class A slot machine-type games (valid three months)||EUR 1 000|
|Temporary bingo-type games in halls (valid three months)||EUR 1 750|
|for each location, as well as 5 % of the nominal value of cards purchased from Imprimeria Naţională SA, which is paid in advance to the State Treasury; a payment order endorsed by the treasury is presented when the cards are collected.|
|Tombola type of games – traditional game: 16% of the organizer’s income from games of chance, as they are defined in Article 11 of this Emergency Ordinance.|
A. For video lottery (VLT): 3 % applied to the licensed operator’s income from games of chance. The fee will be transferred in full to the State budget by the 25th day (inclusive) of the following month, in respect of the previous month. The collected fee will be allocated annually under the State Budget Law to the Ministry of Youth and Sport for supporting sports activities at the national level, as well as the financing of sports clubs, centers for children and juniors.
B. Access fee – entry ticket:
- for games of chance characteristic of casinos: RON 50
- for games of chance characteristic of poker clubs: RON 30
C. Vice fee for games of chance characteristic of slot-machines provided ad art. 10(1) letter e) point (i) for video lottery (VLT): EUR 500/authorized station/year, to be paid by the organizer together with the license fee.
D. Administration fees for the remote gambling license application:
- Documentation analysis fee: EUR 3 000 paid upon submission of the application for a remote gambling license, together with submission of the documents provided for in this Emergency Ordinance;
- License fee: EUR 9 500/year/license.
- 500 euro traditional gambling license request documentation analysis fee, upon submission of the request;
- 150 euro gambling authorization request documentation analysis fee, upon submission of the application for obtaining the exploitation authorization;
- fee analysis documentation request integration of new games/recertification of games on the authorized remote gambling platform 150 euros, upon submission of the request.
Submit the Application
Once you have gathered all the required documentation and paid the application fee, submit your application to the ONJN. It is advisable to submit both physical copies and electronic versions to ensure compliance with the application procedure.
A license must be obtained from the ONJN by all operators wishing to organize gambling activities in Romania. After the Committee has successfully evaluated the applicant’s file, a license may be granted individually for a period of 10 years. This excludes the temporary games in which case the license is granted for a limited period of 3 months. Additionally, an authorization must be obtained from the ONJN. The fees related both to the licenses and the authorization are listed in the next tab.
Regulatory Review and Evaluation
Upon receiving your application, the ONJN will review it thoroughly, assessing your compliance with the legal requirements and evaluating the overall suitability of your application. This review process may take several months, as the authorities prioritize a diligent assessment to ensure the integrity of the gambling market.
In accordance with GEO no. 77/2009, all payments to players participating in online gambling must be made only through a payment processor which holds a Class 2 license granted by the National Gambling Office, irrespective of whether the respective payment entity already holds the necessary authorizations/approvals in accordance with the banking/financial regulation.
On July 18, Law no. 129/2019 was published in the Romanian Official Gazette, which transposes the Directive (EU) 2015/849 on the prevention of the use of the financial system for the purposes of money laundering or terrorist financing (“AML Law”), which, by comparison to the old Romanian AML Law, extends the sphere of reporting entities in the gambling field (in the sense that the old AML law specifically referred only to casinos as being subject to the AML requirements, while the new AML Law applies to all gambling operators). Under the new AML Law, it is the National Gambling Office which is the controlling authority with respect to the prevention of money laundering in the gambling field. While the Romanian AML Office may still carry out inspections, it is expected to do so only under exceptional circumstances, leaving this attribution mainly to the National Gambling Office.
So far, the interpretation of the Romanian AML Office was that only Romanian-based operators were subject to the local AML Law (as such implements the EU Directive), while foreign (non-resident) entities would fall under the AML regulations existing in their country of origin. However, it is worth noting that, based on a recent quasi-official interpretation of the Romanian AML Office during a public conference, it now seems that the Romanian AML Office is of the opinion that the new AML Law is also applicable to foreign entities, which implicitly generates additional legal obligations to such operators. As such, despite being incorporated and having their fiscal residence in other jurisdictions, the foreign-licensed online gambling operators active in Romania and carrying out remote gambling activities on the Romanian territory, in virtue of a Class 1 license and authorization issued by the National Gambling Office, are obliged to perform the relevant AML reporting in Romania and appoint a contact to liaise with the local AML authority.
While the Romanian gambling legislation does not specifically regulate the use of virtual currencies for gambling operations, GEO no. 77/2009 expressly provides that any payment instrument used for gambling must comprise the identification details of the individual who operated the respective instrument. This regulatory requirement may lead to the conclusion that virtual currencies that cannot enable this identification standard are not permitted under the Romanian gambling regulation.
Security and Compliance Audit
As part of the licensing process, the ONJN may conduct an on-site inspection of your company’s premises and perform a comprehensive audit of your security measures, compliance protocols, and technical infrastructure. Cooperate fully with the authorities during this stage and ensure that your operations meet the required standards.
License Issuance and Ongoing Compliance
If your application is successful, you will be granted a Class 1 gambling license by the ONJN. Congratulations! However, obtaining the license is just the beginning. It is essential to maintain ongoing compliance with Romanian gambling regulations, which include regular reporting, audits, and adherence to responsible gambling practices.
Obtaining a Class 1 gambling license in Romania is a multi-step process that requires careful preparation, compliance with legal requirements, and adherence to strict regulations. By familiarizing yourself with the legal framework, assembling the necessary documentation, and fulfilling the obligations set by the ONJN, you can increase your chances of successfully obtaining a license and establishing a reputable and compliant gambling operation in Romania. Remember, ongoing compliance is crucial to maintaining your license, so ensure that you remain up-to-date with any regulatory changes and adhere to responsible gambling practices.
Contact Szilaghi Consulting to Get Your Romanian Gambling License
Since 2004, Szilaghi Consulting has been working with startups, entrepreneurs, and companies already established for online gambling. We have worked all over the world, but we have a special and extensive practice in Romania. During this time, we gained a deep knowledge of the requirements and general obligations of the process of incorporating the company and obtaining a license for gambling in Romania. We have established relationships with industry stakeholders, including authorities, service providers, and other gaming companies. This positions us as market leaders in assisting our customers with Romania licensing goals.
Through our extensive and carefully verified network of contacts in the country, we can ensure that you move efficiently through the entire setup process. We know everything you need to know about requirements, criteria, nuances, and possible obstacles and can help you prevent and navigate whatever comes your way.
To incorporate the company and apply for a gambling license in Romania or just to discuss your plan, vision or options, contact Szilaghi Consulting today.