Ukrainian iGaming Industry: Features of the Equipment Inspection

09 june 2021
Online casino, Land-based solutions, Licensing
Author: James Burton
Source:

One of the questions under discussion in the market is casino software certification. And if local businessmen have already begun to adapt to the existing legal framework, then foreign companies face some difficulties in the regulation process.

Ukrainian iGaming industry: equipment inspection

To find out more about how the government plans to resolve the issue of conformity evaluation of slot machines, and what steps must be taken to attract foreign entrepreneurs, please read this new article written by the experts of Casino Market.

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Formation of the Legal Gambling Environment: Features

The local regulator initially understood that during the development of legal norms, several problems may arise. The controlling body was not only ready for this but also gave operators a couple of breaks so that they can adapt to the changes.

For example, an amendment to the legislation was made that stated that the hardware inspection program and the related standards of work will be introduced no earlier than January 2021 (the market has been officially available since August of the last year).

In order to adapt operators to the new legal framework, the regulator set not so strict rules regarding the characteristics of casino hardware.

Entrepreneurs are allowed to install machines with the following parameters:

  • customisable RTP percentage (not less than 90%);
  • a random number generator that guarantees an independent outcome of each session and the impossibility of predicting the outcome on the basis of previous drawings;
  • network protocols with standard cryptographic protection parameters.

It is important to know that authorities evaluate only technical characteristics of the equipment. As for the security and quality of number generators, they remain under the control of software vendors.

Market Monitoring Tools

The program for the hardware inspection is one of the main instruments of market monitoring.

However, there are some other ways to control the industry:

  • the possibility of revoking the licence;
  • punitive sanctions (for the violation of rules);
  • the state system of online monitoring.

Certification and Control Bodies

The definition of an exact concept of what must be certified and the formation of the list of equipment that must be inspected became the result of consideration and acceptance of amendments.

Both local and foreign enterprises can become the subjects of certification. Thus, Ukraine has legislatively made the casino sector available both for operators and enterprises participating in international audits, fair play control programs, etc.

The authorised body that develops certification standards and evaluates conformity of inspection centres is the Commission for the Regulation of Gambling and Lotteries.

It closely cooperates with the local accreditation centre and forms a list of available certification entities from companies that have previously received an appropriate accreditation.

Elements that must be certified:

  • slots;
  • gaming tables;
  • systems for virtual casinos;
  • shuffle machines.

Initially, the list was longer but the Commission shortened it to launch the market faster and give operators more time to adapt to present-day developments.

The list will be expanded in the future, so operators should be prepared for more changes and amendments to the legislation.

Currently, 5 enterprises were allowed to enter the market by the Ukrainian accreditation centre:

  • PC “Zaporizhzhia Scientific and Production Centre for Standardisation, Metrology, and Certification”;
  • TOV “NVC KIEVSTANDARTMETROLOGIYA”
  • PC “Ukrainian State Centre of Radio Frequencies”;
  • PC “Vinnytsia Research and Production Centre for Standardisation, Metrology, and Certification”;
  • PE “Etalon”.

The regulator provides gambling operators with the following services:

  • assessment of compliance of technical devices with current regulations;
  • confirmation of compliance with the internal certification program;
  • comprehensive technical and laboratory testing of equipment;
  • experimental research with the possibility of attracting external independent experts.

Certification centres organise their work in such a way as to completely exclude the possibility of administrative, commercial, financial or other influence on the objectivity and independence of the assessment.

Technical Regulations and Voluntary Certification Program

Technical regulations and voluntary certification program

The government offers operators 2 ways of entering the market legally.

Available formats for certification of gambling equipment

Inspection in accordance with the technical guideline

Since the document is at the stage of development, it is not yet legally binding. But in the future, this program will become the only possible standard for testing casino hardware

Voluntary certification

The program is valid during the adaptation period and is based on Article №24 of the Ukrainian Law on technical regulations and conformity assessment.

Despite the possibility of voluntary participation in the program, the documents issued by authorised bodies are fully legal and will not be avoided after the appearance of the new rules

The Main Provisions of the Voluntary Certification Program

The operation of this system is based on legal provisions and guarantees:

  1. Voluntary conformity assessment process. Equipment certification is voluntary and optional.
  2. The form of inspection. Operators independently choose the format of verification, equipment inspection, and the method of declaring the results of the assessment.
  3. Coordination contract. It is drawn up for each specific participant and includes a list of control standards and other cooperation conditions. In Ukraine, there is currently no unified and standardised program.
  4. Compliance with technical regulations. Entrepreneurs can choose one of the offered methods of technical assessment of equipment: check-out of the parameters of low-voltage electrical devices or electromagnetic compatibility of hardware.

Features of Interaction with Foreign Certification Centres

The development process of full-fledged technical regulations and certification standards is quite long. According to experts, the legal framework will be fully prepared only a year after the start of the work of the authorised body.

At the same time, a strategy for further improvement of the certification procedure has already been discussed.

Among the basic steps that can help regulators to improve working conditions, we can name:

  • gradual extension of the list of subjects of certification;
  • provision of access to the Ukrainian market for respected foreign certification organisations;
  • the fastest possible development of technical regulations.

The quality of the entire gambling market depends on the efficiency, transparency, and stability of the certification program. Therefore, local authorities are extremely interested in attracting foreign partners who already have positive work experience.

They will help the Ukrainian government to quickly resolve the following issues:

  • develop an up-to-date legal framework and unified technical standards;
  • adopt the best practices in the industry;
  • reduce operating expenses;
  • increase the level of trust in the international market.

It is known that already 2 foreign companies have expressed a desire to work on the local market and take a direct part in the formation of the regulatory and technical basis for being able to control the industry development. GLI and BMM laboratories filed requests for cooperation with Ukrainian authorities.

It is worth noting that for the official inclusion of foreign laboratories in the country’s register, applicants must meet the following requirements:

  1. Accreditation. It is necessary to have a permit for organising equipment inspections in the ISO/IEC 17020 or ISO/IEC 17025 format.
  2. Loyalty of the enterprise. The authorised body must confirm the lack of communication with occupants and aggression nations in relation to Ukraine.
  3. Absence of any kind of discrimination. Foreign laboratories can operate on the Ukrainian market without the obligatory registration of a representative office in the country but they should comply with the established working standards prescribed for local enterprises.

The Main Things about the Casino Equipment Inspection in Ukraine

Casino equipment inspection in Ukraine

Despite the great amount of work that needs to be done to stabilise the legal framework for the gambling sector, Ukraine has found a way to legally launch the market and is actively developing a program the aim of which is to attract foreign partners.

  • At the moment, 5 certification centres are registered in the country. The list of their services includes the inspection of technical parameters and quality of equipment, as well as the issuance of certificates.
  • Until the introduction of unified technical norms, entrepreneurs can take part in voluntary certification. The obtained permit will have legal force and cannot be cancelled after the full establishment of the legal framework.
  • Ukraine is interested in cooperation with foreign certification laboratories. Currently, 2 international companies have already expressed a wish to cooperate with local authorities: GLI and BMM.

To learn more about the nuances of entering the Ukrainian market and pass the inspection of gambling equipment, you can contact specialists of Casino Market. We guarantee comprehensive legal support and access to the most interesting market innovations.

From us, you can also purchase:

  • hardware equipment from well-known providers;
  • new-generation security systems;
  • multi-game rooms;
  • cash register equipment;
  • self-service terminals;
  • gaming tables, furniture, and much more.

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James Burton The Casino Market partner, the owner of the gambling establishments’ network
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