Legislation Update: North Macedonia

News from North Macedonia: President decided against signing the Proclamation on the Amendments of the Law on Games of Chance

On 13 February 2024, the President of North Macedonia (“President”) announced that he decided against signing the Proclamation for the Promulgation of the Law on Amending and Supplementing the Law on Games of Chance and Entertainment Games (“Proclamation”), which the Assembly of North Macedonia (“Assembly”) adopted at the session held on 7 February 2024.

The decision to not sign the Proclamation was made by the President on the basis of a detailed analysis of the text and the procedure in which the Law on Amendments and Supplements to the Law on Games of Chance and Entertainment Games (“Law”) was adopted. This decision followed numerous consultations with the Delegation of the European Union to North Macedonia (“Delegation”).

The reasoning behind the President’s refusal to sign the Proclamation was due to his belief that the Law was adopted through inappropriate use of the accelerated procedure as prescribed by Macedonian law, intending to harmonize North Macedonia’s legislation with the law of the European Union (“EU”). This belief was further reinforced by the Delegation, who asserted that the Law was adopted in an accelerated procedure, popularly known as an EU flag procedure, which the Delegation considers inappropriate as the Law does not provide for relevant EU acquis. The Delegation emphasized that the EU flag procedure should only be used for the adoption of laws related to or originating from the acquis of the EU, and not to stifle public debate on state matters.

The President invited the Assembly to restart the procedure on the issue of the adoption of the Law without delay, but this time in a regular legislative procedure with a broad and inclusive debate of all interested parties. Under the Constitution of North Macedonia, the Law cannot enter into force without the President signing the Proclamation. However, if the Assembly reconsiders the adoption of the Law, and adopts the Law with a majority vote of all members of the Assembly, then the President will be obliged to sign the Proclamation without delay.

It remains to be seen whether and in which manner will the Assembly reconsider the procedure for the adoption of the Law and what will be the possible implications of the President’s decision for the organizers of games of chance.


The information in this document does not constitute legal advice on any particular matter and is provided for general informational purposes only.