From 2021 a new gaming authority will come into existence in Singapore, the Gambling Regulatory Authority (GRA) will oversee all the different types of gambling that occur in Singapore. The two huge integrated casino resorts, Resorts World Sentosa and Marina Bay Sands will no longer be regulated by the Singapore Casino Regulatory Authority (CRA).
Their role was to make sure that their casinos are not influenced by any kind of criminal activity. Also, the CRA wants to make sure the casinos are not doing harm to the wider society of Singapore especially younger and vulnerable people.
A fresh approach from 2021
The Gambling Regulatory Authority was created by the Ministry of Home Affairs to oversee the entire gambling-related industries of Singapore and will have more powers to make sure all gambling organizations are beyond reproach. The new gaming authority will oversee the lottery and sports betting as well as the two casino giants Singaporean and offshore gambling businesses.
Gambling in Singapore
Singapore has very strict laws with regards to gambling and people have to be very careful when doing so as to not fall foul of the very strict punishments that include very hefty fines and sometimes even imprisonment. Gaming houses are completely illegal and should be avoided. A common gaming house is any kind of building or location that is used for gambling.
Bookmakers are also illegal in Singapore. And anyone making a bet with a private bookmaker can be fined up to $5000 and be sent to prison for up to 6 months. If you want to legally bet in Singapore then you need to visit one of the official casinos, the Tote board or Singapore Pools.
Jackpot machines are also illegal unless they are under the control of a licensed operator. The age you need to be in order to gamble is higher in Singapore at 21.
Online gambling was made illegal in 2014 in Singapore and made legal in 2016 through the Singapore Pools and Singapore turf club. It is very clear, you are breaking the law if you bet online and don’t use one of these organizations and the fines are the usual $5000 and up to 6 months imprisonment.
The remote gambling act of 2014 is very strict and makes it very clear that if a foreign online gambling website is blocked or not, placing any bets on the site is a criminal offence. Don’t be surprised either, Singapore has extremely high fines for dropping cigarette buts, littering while chewing bubble gum is completely illegal. So, If you enjoy gambling at your local bookies or betting online whilst indulging in your favourite chewing gum. Maybe Singapore is best avoided.
If you enjoy horse racing and like to have a cheeky punt now and again, this has to be done through Singapore Pools. The easiest way to do this is online through the Singapore Pools application.
The current covid pandemic has hurt many industries throughout the world, especially in the service and tourist sectors where 2020 will go down as one of the worst years on record.
Unfortunately, many businesses were unable to survive and the ones that did were the huge global conglomerates such as the two large integrated casino resorts in Singapore (the Marina Bay Sands and the Resorts World Sentosa owned by Las Vegas Sands and the Genting Group respectively).
From April to the beginning of July no customers were allowed to gamble and since the summer, temperature screenings and face masks have been made compulsory.