Montenegro plans to cancel electronic payment methods of replenishing accounts for gambling.

Montenegro Bet is a trade association. They have submitted a petition to the country’s assembly. The petition calls for the rejection of proposed changes to gambling legislation. These changes would ban the use of electronic payment methods. The country has an eye on applying to join the European Union. The proposed amendments are unconstitutional and incompatible with the law of European Union has been argued.
The amendment to Article 68f of the Montenegro gambling law would ban the use of e-banking and mobile payments for deposits to betting accounts. It would leave customers with the option of depositing cash at a betting shop or by paying card only at a betting shop thru terminal.
Montenegro Bet’s petition in a country that has a population of 620, 000 wherein some 25, 000 people have signed. The move could severely impact business, resulting with potential job losses according to the trade association.
Jovana Klisić represents Montenegro Bet. She stated that the sector directly and indirectly employs almost 2 per cent of the country’s workforce. This is significant given the country’s unemployment rate of 15 per cent. Any negative impact on this industry could have very harmful and far-reaching consequences.
Klisić added that the removal of ebanking for deposits, despite the compliance and transparency, not only affects operational efficiency but also jeopardizes jobs, with detrimental effects on Montenegro’s broader economy.
She said that the amendments breach five EU legal provisions. It includes Article 72 of the Montenegro-EU Stabilization and Association Agreement and the Payment Services Directive. Klisić also highlighted that AML watchdogs like Moneyval and the Financial Action Task Force favor a transition to electronic payments.
In 2022, MR-SF (the Slovakian Ministry of Finance) and the country’s gambling regulator URHH hosted a study visit for their Montenegro counterparts.