Government Reviewing Gambling Laws
MANILA, Philippines (May 29, 2023) — In a written reply to a question raised during the ongoing meeting of the Dewan Rakyat (House of Representatives) of the Malaysian Parliament, the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, said that the Ministry of Finance is reviewing the gaming legislation with a view to introducing amendments that will enable the government “to enforce and regulate licensed gambling activities and online gambling more comprehensively.”1
According to the Prime Minister, the following gaming legislation is being reviewed:
- Common Gaming Houses Act 1953;
- Pool Betting Act 1967;
- Lotteries Act 1952; and
- Betting Act 1953.2
As the last amendment to the above-referred legislation was made more than two decades ago in 2001, a review is warranted and well overdue as the internet has made gambling easily accessible through local and offshore online gambling websites.
In November 2021, the then Deputy Minister of Home Affairs, Datuk Seri Ismail Mohamed Said, said Malaysia’s gambling laws were being reviewed to tackle online gambling activities.3 Regrettably, amendments have not been tabled to date.
Although the Finance Minister did not indicate when the amendments will be tabled in Parliament, it is hoped that the government will prioritise this long overdue update to our archaic gambling laws.
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