For most people, South Africa is the gambling Mecca of continental Africa. It is because the country’s eGaming landscape is the fastest evolving in the world’s second-largest continent. However, online gambling in this part of the world is under-exploited, partly because of stringent legal measures often imposed on eGaming operators. Despite these challenges, internet gamblers in South Africa enjoy gambling liberties that you won’t find anywhere else in Africa.
This article reviews some interesting facts about the online gambling landscape in South Africa that every gambler and stakeholder in the industry should know. And if you want to test a South African gaming site, the online casino South Africa 2021 is a great starting point, especially for newcomers looking for exciting welcome offers.
Before we dig deeper, let’s start by reviewing the National Gambling Board of South Africa, especially its foresight role and policy formulation/enactment.
The National Gambling Board of South Africa
South Africa’s National Gambling Board (NGA) plays a critical role in ensuring the country’s eGaming sector is regulated as per established laws. NGA is empowered by the National Gambling Act of 2004 section 7. The body ensures that every eGaming operator in the country operates within the law and complies with the established gambling frameworks. Most importantly, NGA aims to project a positive image of South Africa internationally, especially as a safe gambling destination.
Moreover, with the continued global growth of the eGaming sector, the National Gambling Commission ensures that eGaming operators in South Africa are tax-compliant and do not partake in money laundering. NGA further provides the much-needed leadership through training programs to ensure that eGaming in South Africa is at par with international standards.
Five Interesting Facts about eGaming in South Africa
Despite legal restrictions on internet gaming that have slowed the growth of South Africa’s eGaming sector, there are notable interesting facts about the country’s eGaming sector, such as the following:
South Africa’s eGaming Sector Is the Most Vibrant in Africa
Most researchers agree that eGaming in Africa is under-exploited, thanks to protracted laws that ban operators from establishing gaming entities in most parts of the continent. For example, South Africa’s gambling Act of 2004 prohibits interactive gambling, effectively outlawing online casinos. However, loopholes in these legal enactments have fuelled an explosive gambling situation in South Africa. It is projected that South Africa’s gambling revenue will hit $2.5 billion by the end of 2021. Note that gambling contributes massively to the country’s GDP, which is the second-highest in the continent.
South Africa’s EGaming Is Still Undergoing Legal Review
Even though anyone can sign-up with a South African online casino, eGaming is legally banned. With the gambling Act of 2004 still enforced, the country’s online gambling situation remains unpredictable. Until the president implements the interactive gambling act of 2008, playing online casino games in South Africa could land you in trouble.
However, a parliamentary process that undertook public hearings between 2009 and 2010 recommended important changes that could speed up the implementation of the 2008 Gambling Act. South Africa’s gambling review commission observed disparities in legal frameworks that govern the National Lottery and other gambling activities in the country.
The parliamentary commission further observed that it is becoming difficult to curb interactive gambling in South Africa due to the fast-evolving gaming technologies. Thus, the need to legalize online gambling in the South is paramount, especially at this time when the sector has demonstrated vibrant growth and contributed generously to the country’s GDP.
Online Lotto Is the Most Popular Gambling Activity in South Africa
Since its inception, South Africa’s online lotto remains an invaluable gambling asset to its gambling populations. Websites that feature the best lotto games sampled from around the world have sprouted in the country. It means every lotto game is available at your fingertips. The first lotto draw in South Africa took place in March 2000, only nine days after the gambling activity was commissioned by then-president Thabo Mbeki.
Today, the South African government regards the National Lottery in high esteem. Millions have been won in the online lottery, and more winners are expected in the coming years. The biggest ever South Africa’s lotto win was registered in February 2019 when a Cape Town player who sought anonymity walked away with R232 million. Further revelations indicated that the winner was a man in his 50s who had bought a lotto ticket from Tygerdal’s OK Mini Mark in Western Cape.
In May this year, ITHUBA revealed that two lotto players had won R112 million. This time, one of the winning tickets was purchased from Cape Town’s OK Mini Mark Thornton. The other winner purchased a lotto ticket from Meerensee Dried Fruits and Nuts in Kwa-Zulu Natal.
Online Casinos Are Taking Over eGaming Sector in South Africa
The eGaming sector in South Africa is going mobile as more people shift from web-based platforms to gaming apps. Apart from being the best South African city for remote working, Cape Town has particularly witnessed a surge in online mobile gamblers. Land-based casinos have become less popular since the outbreak of coronavirus. Note that as high-speed internet connectivity takes shape in South Africa, 5G is ushering a new era of mobile gambling in this part of the world.
Offshore Online Casinos Are Popular in South Africa
South Africa’s gambling scene has continued to provide a level playing field for both new and existing operators. Even more interesting is the fact that offshore gaming sites have become the go-to platforms for most South African punters. While the Gambling Act of 2004 prohibits such operators from running gambling activities in the country, punishment for violators is not stated. It is a legal loophole that will soon be overtaken by events, especially when the country awaits the implementation of the Interactive Gambling Act of 2008.
South Africa’s eGaming situation is an interesting one. Most importantly, the country epitomizes eGaming in Africa. With hundreds of eGaming operators offering gambling services in the country, you can never run out of options. Implementation of the Gambling Act of 2008 will further open up gambling in South Africa, creating millions of jobs and more revenue streams for the government.