Big Ticket: Abu Dhabi prize draw resumes operations in UAE

Firm had paused operations last month in line with the gaming regulators

Big Ticket Abu Dhabi is operating as normal once again, the prize draw firm confirmed. Photo: Big Ticket Abu Dhabi
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Abu Dhabi's Big Ticket prize draw has confirmed it is resuming operations after pausing last month to comply with the UAE's gaming regulations.

The company confirmed it was operating as normal, with tickets on sale for the next prize draw on June 3.

Big Ticket put operations on hold in the UAE on April 1 in line with regulations from the newly established General Commercial Gaming Regulatory Authority (GCGRA).

Fellow operators Mahzooz and Emirates Draw had halted their services in January.

“The decision to temporarily pause operations earlier in April provided an opportunity for the business to assess and confirm its readiness to adhere to the evolving regulatory landscape set by the GCGRA for a safe and regulated commercial gaming environment,” the Big Ticket said on Thursday.

The National has contacted Big Ticket for further details.

The Big Ticket was established in 1992 and allowed players to purchase their tickets online or at Big Ticket counters at Abu Dhabi and Al Ain International Airport.

In September, the General Commercial Gaming Regulatory Authority was established in the UAE.

Article No 355 of UAE law considers all forms of gambling a criminal offence. Punishments could result in imprisonment, fines, or both. Some exceptions to prize draw laws in the UAE have meant that some companies authorised under the Ministry of Economy have been permitted to conduct raffles.

Prize draw companies across the UAE previously applied to become the country's sole operator, senior figures from the firms confirmed.

Both Mahzooz and Emirates Draw have registered their intent to run the national UAE prize draw, with one licence up for grabs.

The GCGRA has also been contacted for comment.

Updated: May 09, 2024, 12:00 PM