TIRANA, Albania (AP) — Albania’s government says it will relocate all casinos and betting shops out of residential areas to curb their spread, especially in the capital Tirana.
Prime Minister Edi Rama said Tuesday that by Dec. 31 all casinos, including shops taking bets on sports and animal races, will need to be closed and move to city outskirts.
City streets in Albania, one of the poorest countries in Europe, are filled with sport betting shops.
The prime minister said that although the number of casinos have dropped to 20 from 40 in 2013, the government’s gambling tax revenue has increased to $54 million (€47 million) from $37 million (€32 million) five years ago.
Rama also warned that media outlets that don’t stop illegal gambling advertising will be “closed by force.”