8 Countries Where Gambling is Completely Illegal
Countries around the world have different attitudes towards gambling and are building their own measures when it comes to its legality. Some countries, such as the United Kingdom, have very liberal gambling markets. Other countries tend to provide access to certain forms of gambling, but not to others. Finally, there are countries that completely ban all forms of gambling, defining it as illegal entertainment for locals.
We will look in detail at the legal status of gambling in 8 such countries:
Although it is true that the regulation of gambling in Cambodia allows the creation of various forms of gambling establishments, they are not for use by locals. Foreign visitors are the only people who can visit these places and bet their money. The reason for this is the history of gambling addiction in Cambodia. During the Khmer Rouge regime, gambling was completely banned in the country, but was legalized again in the 1990s. After noticing how many of its citizens are addicted to the business, the government introduced the Gambling Suppression Act. The law revoked all licenses issued to operators and banned almost all forms of betting by Cambodians. Anyone found gambling can be fined up to 50,000 riyals or up to one month in prison. The only form of gambling that remained legal and accessible to Cambodians for a short time was slot machines. However, in 2009 they were also banned.
Of course, the establishments that still operate today serve foreign visitors and they are maintained to bring in tax revenue. However, these operations require an official license to provide their services. Online gambling is also not regulated in Cambodia, although it is believed to be included in the gambling described in the Gambling Restriction Act.
Currently, there are no legal gambling opportunities in Cuba. The reason for this can be given by the country's communist regime, but not entirely because other communist nations have successfully integrated casinos and the like in their countries. In general, casinos have always been seen by these countries as a way to extract hard money from visiting tourists. That is why communist countries have casinos in their hotels where foreign visitors can play, but never residents.
In Cuba there are no land-based casinos, and online gambling is also considered illegal. However, it is unknown at this time whether anyone found to be involved in online gambling will be prosecuted. Given this, Cuba has a very centralized and highly controlled internet scene, which means it's probably best to avoid even looking for online gambling in the country. Tourists visiting Cuba, on the other hand, can visit the sites freely.
Looking back, Fidel Castro banned all forms of gambling in 1959 after removing Fulgencio Batista. Since then, gambling has been an illegal activity in Cuba. The basic law on gambling in force in the country is Ley 86 1959. Even now, betting on illegal cockfighting remains the predominant activity in Cuba's rural areas. It is officially an illegal blood sport in Cuba and many other countries around the world. However, it seems that the people of the province of Cuba do not have the same mindset and continue their illegal blood sports and related betting.
Lebanese law states that citizens may not engage in any gambling activity. The government has full power to block any gambling activity. Actually, the country has a very unique legal system, which is known as confessionalism, based on religious groups. A total of 18 recognized religious groups are based in Lebanon, and each has its own legislation and religious courts. The dominant religions are represented in parliament. Due to all this, gambling in Lebanon is allowed only in the Casino du Liban, which has a monopoly on gambling in the country. Outside this place, gambling is strictly prohibited. Online gambling has also been banned, and overseas-based casinos have been blocked by the government recently. The Lebanese lottery company La Libanaise des Jeux is the only operation that can provide online gambling. That's why you shouldn't expect new online casino sites to appear soon in 2022.
Too little is known about the freedoms in North Korea, and gambling is certainly tightly controlled there. The lives of the people living in the country are so controlled under the dictatorship of Kim Jong Un that many of them probably do not know what gambling really is. Both online and offline gambling is completely restricted in North Korea, but many people still do not have the money to afford it. There is a ray of hope in Pyongyang and the northernmost part of the country, where the only operating casinos exist. However, they are only available to foreign tourists who are visiting the country with a guide. The North Korean law restricts locals from entering these casinos, and such legislation is so severe that residents can be severely punished if they are caught gambling. For this reason, people are simply staying away from everything that is considered illegal in North Korea.
Anyone planning to visit North Korea should always check with a tour guide to see if they can gamble or not. Strictly regulated internet means that there are not many opportunities open to you.
Qatar is perhaps the strictest of all countries when it comes to the gambling scene, all forms of gambling are considered 100% illegal there. Even sports betting is prohibited by the laws of the Arab nation. As a result, this has led to a fairly thriving underground gambling industry in the country. Unfortunately, many people have been caught doing this and have paid the price for their gambling activities. You won't even find a lottery in Qatar. Online gambling is also considered illegal, although some people choose to ignore the country's laws by visiting offshore platforms to enjoy the games. However, the government often tries to block access to these sites, leading to a large blacklist of online casinos and sports betting. Obviously, the online scene is much more difficult to be controlled than the land-based scene, but of all the countries in the world, Qatar is the one that is trying to erase completely such activities. Under Qatar's penal code, any player caught gambling, whether online or offline, could face up to three months in prison and a fine of up to 3,000 riyals.
One thing is certain about online gambling in Singapore - it is completely illegal under the Remote Gambling Act in Singapore. That is, unless a special exception is made to take care of it. And since 2016, the only operators to have received such an exemption are Singapore Turf Club and Singapore Pools. In addition to these two companies, both online and land-based gambling in the country are considered illegal activities. Various forms of gambling have been reintroduced in Singapore since it gained independence from the United Kingdom in 1963. This has led to options such as football betting, private lottery clubs, horse racing and others that are returning to the market. However, in 2004 the authorities decided to launch an investigation into how legal casino gambling could be successfully introduced. The benefits and costs associated with its introduction were discussed, as well as the harmful effects it could have on residents.
This led to the country legalizing casino gambling in 2005, but only in land-based establishments. But the restrictions on online gambling were doubled. The gambling law mentioned above ensures that various gambling activities are considered criminal offenses. Players who gamble online in Singapore could face fines of up to $ 500,000 and up to seven years in prison.
When it comes to gambling, Vietnam has very strict rules and restrictions. In fact, the country has banned most forms of gambling everywhere. As a result, any form of gambling that takes place inside is taken very seriously as a crime. Land-based casinos attached to luxury hotels are available in Vietnam, but they are only for hotel guests and Vietnamese residents are not allowed to play. Anyone wishing to enter one of these casinos must present their passport at the door to prove that they are not residents of the country. Players may have access to various online casinos, sports betting and so on, but should be prepared to face the consequences if they are caught doing so.
The only activity that is not considered gambling in Vietnam that residents can participate in is the country's lottery. This started in 1999 and you can find suppliers all over the country who sell tickets for it.
United Arab Emirates
It can usually be said that every nation under Islamic rule considers gambling to be an illegal activity. However, compared to various other Islamic countries, the United Arab Emirates has much stricter settings, which impose severe sanctions on those who engage in gambling of all kinds. If a UAE resident decides he wants to play roulette and does so but is caught by the authorities in the process, then he can be sentenced to up to two years in prison under UAE law, thanks to Article 414 of the country's Penal Code. This is due to the fact that the country has imposed quite severe measures against gambling of all kinds, as the telecommunications regulator controls all online content and blocks access to any gambling site for UAE residents.
Even if you are a tourist visiting the United Arab Emirates on holiday and gambling, you can be convicted for such activities.