Gambling Regulation: Is Thailand Finally Ready to Launch Casino Gambling?

Gambling has been illegal in Thailand for almost 100 years, but things could be set to change in coming years.

Key Takeaways

  • Gambling has been illegal in Thailand since 1935
  • The government decided to outlaw gambling to reduce criminal activity and bankruptcy
  • Despite the prohibition, estimates suggest that Thailand’s gambling industry is worth billions of dollars
  • Lawmakers are now considering legalizing gambling and may impose a 30% tax on casinos

Gambling has been outlawed in Thailand for several decades. The Gambling Act of 1935 prohibits all forms of gambling, including all activities at online or land-based casinos. The country’s law on gambling prohibition is so strict that Thailand introduced The Playing Cards Act in 1943, which outlaws ownership of more than 120 playing cards without government approval. However, federal law allows citizens to bet on horse races and partake in the state-backed Thai lottery.

Gambling was not always illegal in the Southeast Asian nation. Many years ago, the Thai government permitted legal gambling dens where citizens played games of chance, and maintained these dens as a source of revenue.

However, authorities eventually shut down the casinos to minimize criminal activity and control the spread of bankruptcy-induced gambling.

Although Thailand has maintained this position for a long time, gambling enthusiasts in the country now hope the government will soften its aversion to the industry. The optimism is largely because a casino resort proposal has garnered support across major parties in the Thai House of Representatives. Currently, stakeholders are studying the potential of launching Thai casinos and resorts.

According to a Bangkok Post report, the government set up a parliamentary committee to study the possible legalization of casinos. The Thai House of Representatives has already approved the committee’s proposal, which provides for several casino resorts in the country.

Additional reports suggest that the committee proposes five casino resorts in different parts of the country. The choice locations are Bangkok and Pattaya for the central region, Chiang Mai or Chiang Rai for the north, Phang-Nga, Krabi, or Phuket in the south, and Khon Kaen, Udon Thani, or Ubon Ratchathani in the northeast.

It is currently unclear whether or not the Thai government would also consider legalizing online casinos along with the proposed resorts. If this happens, Thai citizens would have access to a whole world of options for their online gaming needs. A list by B2C, for example, shows that there are several online casinos already looking to attract customers by providing several perks and bonuses, with some offering welcome bonuses of up to 120%.

The government is reportedly interested in legalizing casinos and will likely invite private investors. However, these investors would have to adhere to strict rules. For instance, all gamblers allowed to play must be “of good financial standing” and at least 20 years old. The government will also likely impose a 30% tax rate on casinos.

Legalizing gambling in Thailand would create a vibrant gaming community where people could enjoy and learn how to play many online games. Since crypto trading is also legal and regulated in Thailand, the country may also enjoy increased crypto adoption if the casinos eventually provide enough support for the digital asset industry. Current estimates suggest that Thailand’s gambling industry could be worth between $9 billion and $12 billion. 

In addition, proper gambling legislation would reduce the growth of illegal betting dens and likely reduce the resulting crime. Authorities are still cracking down on defaulters, despite how popular iGaming is. Last year, the Royal Thai Police raided two apartments in Bangkok’s Sukhumvit district, where Chinese nationals made ฿100 million monthly from six illegal gambling sites.

Related Posts

Next Post

Welcome Back!

Login to your account below

Create New Account!

Fill the forms below to register

Retrieve your password

Please enter your username or email address to reset your password.

Are you sure want to unlock this post?
Unlock left : 0
Are you sure want to cancel subscription?