Photo from UNIAN

The letter, which was signed by the country’s president, prime minister, finance minister and national bank president (although the latter abruptly quit on Monday), vowed to press ahead with plans to legalize gambling in the Ukraine, “which will contribute additional revenue to the budget no later than 2018,” CalvinAyre reports.

In 2015, Ukraine introduced draft legislation that would have authorized land-based casinos, sports betting, a new national lottery and online gambling sites. The following year, the government suggested its gambling market could generate revenue of $1.5b per year, but gambling operators balked at the price of proposed license fees and the tax rates, and the legislation went nowhere.

Read alsoReuters: IMF says new Ukraine central bank chief must be independentIn February, Finance Minister Aleksandr Danyliuk restated the government’s intention to bring gambling out of the shadows and into the light. The government believes its delays in opening up its gambling market means it has missed out on $370m on gambling tax revenue over the past two years.