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Exploring Gambling Markets in the Balkans: Expert Analysis

Updated 23 august 2023
Online casino, Licensing, Betting
Author: James Burton

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The Balkans, a region known for its enduring land-based wagering tradition, have recently witnessed a surge in online playing activity. Many countries in this area refine or establish new regulatory policies.

Gambling in the Balkans: top 3 countries

This article delves into the iGaming opportunities in the Balkans, exploring the rules, costs, and potential for growth in this emerging sector of Europe. Casino Market specialists will help you integrate entertainment software or provide licensing assistance in the region.

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iGaming in the Balkans: 3 Key States

Located in Southeast Europe, the territory is a hub of advancing economies and evolving wagering spheres. The rules for operators are a bit varied, but the Balkans are a promising opportunity for online entertainment in Europe.

The key markets to focus on in the region are the following 3 countries:


Its substantial population and Gross Gaming Revenue (GGR) exceeding €2 billion make it an attractive target for businessmen in the online entertainment industry.

The country's iGaming potential is boosted by its:

  • rich cultural history;
  • attractive tourism destinations;
  • a growing digital infrastructure.

With a population that provides a sizable player base, Greece offers significant revenue potential for iGaming entrepreneurs. The combination of local demand and tourist engagement creates a diverse player pool.

The Greek government frequently modernises regulations surrounding the growth of the iGaming industry


The local entertainment industry has gained attention due to its spectacular prospects. The state boasts a Gross Gaming Revenue of €785 mln in 2019 and nearly 7 mln people.

Serbia’s relatively high GGR indicates a strong interest in online wagering activities among its population. The local digital infrastructure provides a fertile ground for web gambling businessmen.

The Serbian government demonstrates a strong interest in adapting regulations to support the sector's growth potential


The state has a community of 19 million residents and is a noteworthy player in the iGaming niche within the Balkans.

The Romanian web wagering sphere has improved by a remarkable 416% surge in GGR between 2015 and 2019.

This growth can be attributed to a combination of factors, such as:

  • regulatory advancements;
  • increased internet penetration;
  • a thriving digital ecosystem.

The Romanian authorities established a clear and transparent regulatory framework that fostered a competitive landscape.

Distributors may innovate and provide diverse gaming experiences to a growing audience

The expansion of online wagering services in Greece, Serbia, and Romania presents an opportunity for businessmen to tap into dynamic and evolving markets.

Regulatory Landscape and Licensing Costs

Each Balkan country approaches iGaming restrictions differently, impacting the attractiveness of their markets for entrepreneurs.

  1. In Slovenia, amusements may only be proposed by brands that hold licences for traditional wagering services.
  2. Bosnia and Herzegovina, a country comprising 3 entities, enforce varying laws for each region.
  3. Croatia, which altered its gaming supervisions after joining the EU, places strict limitations on the sphere.
  4. Serbia, driven by a robust GGR and a sizable population, enables local licensing for internet casinos and bookmaker offices.

Costs for a permit vary between countries:

  1. In Croatia, a web certificate comes at around €400,000 per year.
  2. Bosnia and Herzegovina, divided into entities with distinct regulations, set a licence cost of $55,709 for internet operators.
  3. Serbia requires entrepreneurs to have at least €250,000 share capital, a bank investment of €300,000, and a daily risk payment of €10,000 for a gambling permit.

Market Specifics: Taxation, Monopolies, and Digitalisation

In some Balkan countries, sweepstakes and certain bookmaker operations are under state monopolies.

  1. Bosnia and Herzegovina has weaker wagering requirements across its territories, but it has embraced digitalisation and iGaming in certain regions.
  2. Greece's complex regulatory framework governs some types of operations. In 2019, the amendment formalised certification procedures for wagering entrepreneurs.
  3. Cyprus controls the entertainment industry through its 2019 Betting Law, enabling stationary casinos to work and limiting internet businessmen to bookmaker services.

The Main Things About the Balkan iGaming Landscape

Balkan gambling business: key notions

Despite complicated rules and contrasting landscapes, the Balkan web wagering sector is poised for growth. The countries have attractive prospects for operators of the entertainment industry, for example:

  1. Slovenia's iGaming market is said to bring €168.50 million in revenue in 2023.
  2. Croatia's bookmaker segment is expected to reach €62.42 million, with a predicted volume of €231.60 million by 2027.
  3. Serbia's wagering sector has seen a 71% growth in GGR, etc.

Casino Market stands ready to guide operators through the intricate process of entering Balkan iGaming jurisdictions. Our experts offer licensing advisory services, ensuring entrepreneurs start their projects with a solid foundation and expert legal support.

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To learn more about iGaming prospects in the Balkans and Casino Market assistance, contact our managers.

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