Ukraine, as a nation, has been facing lots of tribulations lately. But no one saw this coming. The war-torn country has announced new measures against gambling and betting businesses worth tens of billions in the country's native currency, the Ukrainian hryvnias.
In the latest development, the Ukrainian President, Volodymyr Zelensky, claimed that around 280 businesses operated by 120 individuals were engaging in these ventures. The president said that the individuals had actively worked to sabotage the country's interests during this trying period. Zelensky further added that these individuals targeted consumer spending in order to support different Russian-led operations in the country.
In response to these atrocities, the president remarked that these businesses are now being shut down. The president used Decree No. 145/2023, enacted on March 10, 2023. The decree is based on a decision by Ukraine's National Security and Defense Council.
As expected, most people targeted by the new directives were Russian citizens. However, the policy also includes Turkish, Cypriot, Dutch, Polish, and British citizens. Interestingly, companies who have previously game Ukraine moral and material support during the war through donations and raising money for humanitarian relief are also included in the list of sanctioned businesses.
Possibly some of the most recognizable names on the list are Parimatch and Parimatch Foundation, as well as Parimatch United Investments Limited. These businesses operate some of the best online casinos and sportsbooks in the UK and globally. Moreover, 50 years of sanctions have been placed on gambling websites, including Sportbet, BetCity, Bet.ru, Sportloto, and Matchbet.
It's worth noting that Ukraine has been working to prevent its citizens from using Russian-affiliated businesses or predatory gambling companies even before these sanctions. Meanwhile, several gambling businesses have been assisting the country as they continue to battle the Russian invasion.