EEEP ‘shielded’: Casinos next bet

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Of Costa Ketsietzis

The way for the organizational and operational reorganization of the Gaming Supervision and Control Committee (GSC) is paved by the regulations of the Ministry of Finance that were voted yesterday through an amendment to the bill “Driving Safely”.

This is as the Commission prepares to start the procedures for the transition of the country’s land-based casinos to the new EKAZ regime.

The transition to the new regime is expected to be accompanied by relocations of some casinos under the law that was passed last March, but also with ownership changes. The difficult equations that EEEP has to solve are two:

Firstly, there should be no final padlock in any casino and especially in those that have been in the “red” for years and secondly, there should be no distortions in the market with “clean” casinos entering faster under the strictest supervision of EKAZ and troubled companies remain in the old regime.

And all this when developments are expected such as the rumored entry of new investors in the troubled casinos of Alexandroupolis and Corfu, the agreement of Comer Group with the Municipality for the next day of Casino Loutraki, the possible transfer of Casino Syros and the new casino license in Kiri in the context of the development of the property in Gournes.

The new settings

The new legislation comes at a time when the EEEP has been left with only 45 employees out of 173 at the end of 2014 and its scope has expanded significantly.

In terms of revenue, in 2019, before the coronavirus, direct revenues from public participation in the gross profit of games were about 850 million euros, while total direct revenues, including income taxes amounted to about 1,060 million euros. For 2021 the total direct revenues are estimated at approximately 1.2 billion euros and for 2025 at 1.8 billion euros.

According to the president of EEEP, Dimitris Tzanatos, “the regulations that were voted do not solve all the institutional problems, but create the conditions for stabilization and reorganization of EEEP at the organizational and operational level”.

In particular, according to Mr. Tzanatos, with the new regulations:

The remaining seconded executives can be transferred by decision of the Minister of Finance, which will stabilize his number and eliminate the prevailing uncertainty.

The possibility is given, always within the limits of the possibilities provided by the public sector, for immediate filling of gaps in the staffing and gradually for the formation of a sufficiently, functional and efficient organizational structure.

It is now possible, through specific procedures, to establish adequate performance incentives that will upgrade the remuneration of the staff that will contribute with its offer and productivity in the successful exercise of the work of the Authority. In this way, the EEEP will become more attractive to other highly specialized public sector executives.

It is possible to conclude program contracts with educational institutions and other bodies, so that both the gaming market and the Authority, to be connected in the field of research, education and training with universities and other educational bodies, contributing by their action to the upgrading of quality and productivity of the industry.

Finally, it is possible to reorganize the control mechanism, harmonizing the working hours of the control mechanism with those of the market, so that the supervision and control become easier and the individual issues that arise during the implementation are addressed in a timely manner.

“Nevertheless, much remains to be done for the EEEP to be able to perform its institutional role in the most effective way. In this effort, all of us, members, management and executives of the Authority, must be helpers. I would like to assure you that I am always moving and acting in the direction of our substantial modernization so that EEEP develops into a truly modern body of regulation, supervision and control of the gaming market according to international standards “, says Mr. Dzanatos.

The president of EEEP also notes that in the next period will be proposed to the Minister of Finance, who currently has the regulatory authority over the games, specific proposals of legislation and regulations that will improve the operation of the market, based on the experience accumulated.

kostaskets@capital.gr

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Source From: Capital

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