Media Advocacy Coalition negatively assesses deliberation of forthcoming gambling law with accelerated procedure

Statements | MEDIA AND FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION 14 December 2021

On December 13, 2021, the Bureau of the Parliament decided to expeditiously consider the draft law initiated by the members of the Georgian Dream on advertising games of chance. The amendments concern several legal acts, including the Law of Georgia on Broadcasting. The presented legislative package has significant financial effects. 


The Coalitionbelieves, that the arguments presented in the explanatory note are extremely problematic and insufficient. The explanatory note does not clarify the need to hast adoption of the legislative package. The amendments to the Law on Organizing Lotteries, Games of Chance and Other Prize Games are to be effective from March 2022, even if adopted in an expedited manner. This reinforces the suspicion that, objectively, there is no need for accelerated procedures and that the real aim of Parliament is to avoid thorough and professional deliberations.


We also find alarming the fact that the impact of the amendment to the Law of Georgia on Broadcasting on the revenues of broadcasters is not properly assessed. There is a risk that draft law will significantly hurt the financial independence of broadcasters. An examination of this issue is inconceivable without a full deliberation of the draft.


No consultations were received on the draft law from the state, non-governmental and/or international organizations/institutions, the draft is not accompanied by relevant conclusions and evaluations of experts in the field, including the Communications Commission.


Expedited consideration of the draft law and its adoption in two readings in one day precludes a full parliamentary debate, submission of opinions by interested parties and refinement of the draft. These procedures are fundamentally important for initiatives that can significantly affect the state budget and the media sector.

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