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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

First Lottery Bill Moves to Senate

The State Duma on Friday passed in the third reading a bill on lotteries that will be the nation's first attempt at federally regulating the industry if approved by the Federation Council and signed by the president.

The proposed law regulates the lottery industry in Russia by specifying types and standards of lotteries, rules for organizing lotteries, the system for exercising control over the organization of lotteries, the liability of lottery operators and other measures.

Lotteries are divided into single, multi-game, and combined lotteries and international, national, regional, and local, as well as state and nonstate draws.

The law also stipulates the introduction of a unified state register of lottery operators and a mandatory annual audit of their accounting systems.

Under the law, depending on the lottery terms, at least 10 percent of all lottery revenues should be spent on social projects.

The bill says that part of the revenues will help to finance the development of sports and physical education, health care, tourism, science, culture and art, as well as environmental and charity programs.

The current attempt to pass a bill regulating the lottery industry is the seventh in Russia's history.

Estimates vary, but it is believed that Russians spend up to $400 million per year on various types of lotteries run by between 150,000 and 250,000 companies throughout the nation.

The world lottery market is estimated to be worth between $150 billion and $160 billion per year. Americans lead the way, spending $30 billion per year, followed by the Japanese at $8 billion per year and the Germans, who spend $6 billion.

(MT, Prime-Tass)