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Albania to stop online gambling abroad

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October 25, 2013 10:59 AM EST | AP


TIRANA, Albania (AP) — Albania will close access to all Internet betting sites abroad in an effort to stop the outflow of money from one of the poorest countries in Europe.

Prime Minister Edi Rama on Friday said the government would prepare legislation to block gambling on websites based abroad, where Albanians spent 500-700 million euros ($690-965 million) a year, according to calculations from domestic and international experts.

No figure of the money spent on domestic gambling was given.

Rama took power after his leftist Socialist Party-led coalition achieved a landslide victory in the June parliamentary election, and since then officials have checked some 1,300 casinos and betting shops from cities to remote villages, closing down many of them and suing their owners for operating illegally or tax evasion.