Singapore’s online gambling industry is a tricky business due to the legal status of gambling in the city-state which continues to change over time. Even though the country has a long and lustrous history of gambling, the Tiger of Asia is still yet to fully legalize gambling in the country.
The online casino Singapore continues to rise despite all the challenges it faces in the past few decades. The government is still not coming to terms regarding the generation of a robust law to support gambling in the nation.
The Asian gambling market continues to improve from the neighboring countries and it is expected to continue to dominate the gambling world. The future of the Singaporean online betting market is optimistic as we usher in a new era of advancement in technologies.
A Short Glimpse to the History of Gambling in Singapore
Before the colonization of Singapore by the British forces, Singapore was a state in Malaysia and it was a diminutive harbor in the southern tip of the Malay Peninsula. The immigrants of Han Chinese descent settled into the area that shares borders with the Malay people. Upon the conclusion of the British colonial period, Singapore gained independence from the British forces and became a nation.
Prior to the establishment of Singapore as a sovereign state, the earliest gambling activities vary from each of the races but both ends of the spectrum make up the whole Singaporean cultural identity. The Chinese majority bring the games of mahjong and dice games with them in Singapore. On the other hand, the Malay minority retain the penchant for animal games like cockfighting where they wager on their favorite rooster.
In 1923, the British government decided to legalize gambling in Singapore, but crime continues in the country along with gambling. Many organized crime groups also run underground gambling halls that are why gambling was associated with these mafias. The government then decided to ban gambling to prevent these crimes.
In 2005, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong announced that they will open two resorts in the Marina Bay Front and Sentosa Island. These resorts were Resorts World Sentosa and Marina Bay Sands Casino. The two resorts opened casinos as part of their feature to cater to guests with both relaxation and entertainment like live casinos.
Both the resorts were part of the plan to legalize gambling but with the condition that it will be used for tourism purposes. This condition was established in the casinos and forced the casinos to prioritize foreigners and for the locals to play they had to pay an extra fee.
Singapore has a strict policy regarding their casinos, they prioritize foreign gamblers to boost the tourism industry which forces the local players to switch to online gambling. However, the Singaporean government prohibits all online casinos which make the players disappointed.
The Remote Gambling Act of 2014 was passed to ensure that all forms of online gambling will be prohibited in Singapore. Violators of the law were fined and sentenced to imprisonment and gambling sites were blocked and shut down to continue to implement the law.
As of now online gambling is still polarizing and Singapore-based gamblers were forced to comply with the law because certain entities regulate online gambling in Singapore. As of now the only forms of gambling allowed in Singapore were poker, card games, and bookmaking. Online casino operations are still banned in Singapore and are monitored by the Ministry of Home Affairs.
The Singaporean punters will continue to hope for the full legalization of gambling in their nation despite the status of the industry in the country. Most international sites like 12 play casino accommodate Singaporean players and most of them are available in Chinese and Malay languages.
If only the restrictions were removed sooner, the online gambling market in Singapore will continue to flourish and will be one of the emerging markets in the country. As of now, Singapore players will continue to hope for an easing of these restrictions in the future.