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Russian Gambling Bill Passes First Reading

24 March 2006

MOSCOW – As reported by RIA Novosti: "The lower house of parliament passed Friday the first reading of a bill on the government regulation of gambling.

"The bill went through with 300 votes in favor and 105 against with one abstention.

"The document lists gambling activities in the country authorized by the government, which include casinos, slot machines, and bookmaker offices.

"The bill also bans unlicensed gambling business, and encourages the consolidation of gambling businesses and regional quoting.

"The bill, proposed by pro-presidential party United Russia, requires establishments to have net assets of at least 600 million rubles ($22 million) and the win percentage of a slot machine to be no less than 80%…"

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