Potential Legal Reform and Expansion of Online Betting in Singapore

Legal regulations currently govern online betting and gambling activities conducted in Singapore. Even though there are regulations that govern these activities, online sports betting has continued to grow in popularity in the past few years.

Despite strict regulations, numerous offshore operators and trusted online gambling sites continue to cater to Singaporean bettors with offers. In response, regulatory bodies are blocking access and imposing financial penalties on unlicensed betting websites.

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Gambling-Related Laws in Singapore

In Singapore, sports betting is heavily regulated for a secure and responsible gambling environment. The primary legislation governing Singapore betting is the Remote Gambling Act 2014, designed to strictly control and monitor various forms of online gambling in Singapore. This legislation outlaws remote gambling provided by non-exempt operators.

Under this law, only certain licensed subsidiary companies like Singapore Pools can offer online betting services for bettors in the country. Singapore Pools is a state-owned gambling and lottery company owned by the Tote Board. The Tote Board is a subsidiary and the only operator allowed to legally run remote gambling activities in Singapore.

Gambling is defined as betting, gaming, or participating in a lottery under the Act. Meanwhile, gaming is defined as playing or participating in a game of chance for money or money’s worth. A game of chance refers to both that rely on probability, like roulette and games of mixed chances and skills, like blackjack.

Other gambling-related acts in Singapore include the Betting Act (BA) implemented in 1960, the Common Gaming House Act (CGHA), the Private Lotteries Act (PLA), and the Casino Control Act (CCA). The definition of gambling varies across the five gambling-related legislation as it is enforced at different timings and on other focus areas.

The Future of Online Sports Betting in Singapore

With an increasingly digitalised world, gambling has permeated the online and gaming spheres. Despite the regulations, many people choose the opportunity to engage in online gambling activities as it provides numerous advantages over traditional land-based casinos. Access to online gambling websites is easier than ever before.

Many industry experts have predicted that there would be potential legal reforms and expansions. With the rise of technological innovations like mobile betting applications and sportsbook platforms, the online betting industry has excellent growth potential.

The advent of technological development has had a significant impact on the betting industry in Singapore. Aside from the emergence of mobile betting apps and sportsbook platforms, data analytics and artificial intelligence or AI have allowed bookmakers to provide bettors with more accurate odds and predictions.

Legal Reforms and Expansions

In 2022, Singapore enacted new laws on gambling in its country: the Gambling Control Act 2022 and the Gambling Regulatory Authority of Singapore Act 2022. The Singapore parliament passed the laws on March 11, 2022, and were effective on August 1, 2022.

The legislation has three main objectives, which are the following:

●     Addressing the rising trends and products related to gambling activities.

●     Ensuring consistency in the regulation of different products related to gambling

●     Enhancing social safeguards for citizens

Expanded Definition of Gambling and Betting

One of the fundamental changes introduced by the newly established laws is expanding the definition of gambling and betting. Its definitions were expanded to address existing and emerging trends and products associated with gambling that were not previously included.

The Gambling Control Act 2022 updated the definitions of specific key terms, as the old ones were deemed too specific, and it failed to capture emerging products related to gambling. One of these changes is the expanded betting scope defined in the now-repealed Betting Act of 1960.

In the previous legislation, betting only included horse-racing and other sporting events. With emerging platforms and new activities like esports gaming tournaments, the Gambling Control Act amended the betting definition to include the outcome or result of a race, competition, sporting event, or process. Adopting a technology-neutral stance ensures that it covers current and emerging gambling products and activities in the market.

Gambling Regulation Under the New Legislation

Another critical change in the legislation involves harmonising the various gambling-related regulations into a single and combined framework. Under the established GCA in 2022, all gambling activities are regulated under one of three regimes: the Licensing Regime, the Class-Licensing Regime, and the Social Gambling Exception.

The Licensing Regime replaces the past gambling permits and exemptions. The gambling products that the Licensing Regime covers include fruit machines in recreational clubs, Singapore Pools’ products, and gambling activities among members in private establishments. These private establishments include recreational clubs and societies previously not required to apply for a license. They were allowed to conduct gambling activities if they met certain stipulated conditions.

Meanwhile, Class-Licensing Regime was introduced to regulate gambling products that are deemed to be of lower risk. Designated gambling services under this regime can be provided without the need to apply for a license from the GRA as long as they meet the conditions and compliance with the Minister’s Orders.

Gambling products covered by the Class-Licensing Regime include cause-related games, survey-related, and trade promotion games of chance and lotteries. Aside from this, it also includes fundraiser lotteries, remote games of chance, mystery boxes, and incidental games related to chance and lotteries.


Overall, the revision of Singapore’s legal framework on gambling and betting activities addresses the challenges, which involve technology, ease of access, and boundaries of gaming and gambling. Technological advancement has led to increased online gambling as people can now place wagers through electronic devices and smartphones. Another critical difference the Singapore legislation has sought to address is the blurring lines between gambling and gaming.

The overall legal reform and expansion have embraced the emerging and continuously evolving trends in various gambling-related activities and the growing range of gambling products in the market.

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