Simon’s Guide to Gambling and Casinos in Tunisia

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This is a picture of a palm tree at the beach in Tunisia. Tunisia is a popular tourist destination, gambling is only allowed for tourists at one of the 4 licensed casinos.

Gambling in Tunisia

 

Tunisia is a North African country with a predominantly Muslim population (estimated around 90%). After the revolution of 2011, a moderately Islamist government was formed, but Tunisia is considered a secular state, it does not mix politics with religion nearly as much as many other Islamic countries. Partly, because as the result of the years spent under French colonial supervision, most of its laws are based on French code, with some influence of Islamic Shari’a Law.

That being said, the country’s attitude towards gambling reflects Islamic notions much more than Europeans. All forms of gambling in Tunisia are prohibited by law. Casino gambling is legal, but casinos are reserved exclusively for non-residents and casino games in these venues can only be played using foreign currencies. Moreover, according to a 2013 study, only two percent of the population of Tunisia believes, that gambling is a morally acceptable activity*.

Online gambling is also illegal, the government does not issue licenses to online providers, but players of foreign platforms doesn’t appear to be prosecuted by the authorities. Online gambling sites in Tunisia are not blocked by the ISPs either. Although, before the revolution a robust censoring and surveillance system was in power, it mostly targeted political content and social networks. After freedom of speech was proclaimed in 2011, the censoring apparatus was disarmed.

 

*Source: Pew Research Center – Morality Interactive Topline Results

 

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Casino gambling in Tunisia

 

Online casino gambling in Tunisia: illegal, players are not prosecuted

 

Casinos are an important part of Tunisia’s tourist sector and its economy in general, although in recent years, the number of tourists visiting the country was decreased significantly due to political instabilities. However, tourism is still one of the most important sources of revenue for the country and that’s the reason casinos are exempt from under the blanket ban prohibiting nearly all other forms of gambling. There are currently four casinos in Tunisia, the Grand Casino Djerba, the Grand Casino Yasmine, the Kantaoui Port Casino, and the Diar Lemdina Hotel Hammamet, all located at popular tourist destinations.

It is illegal for players from Tunisia to play at online casinos. However, many of these sites accept players from the country, and the government doesn’t block them through ISPs either. Despite the ban, individual players of such platforms don’t seem to be prosecuted.

 

 

 

Bingo in Tunisia

 

Online Bingo in Tunisia: illegal, players are not prosecuted

 

None of the licensed brick and mortar casinos seem to have a Bingo hall in Tunisia and since these are the only venues where gambling is not prohibited, it’s safe to say that legal, land based Bingo is pretty much non existent in the country. It doesn’t seem to be a very popular game here anyway.

Online Bingo, as a form of gambling, is also prohibited by law, but many online gambling sites offering Bingo games accept registrations from Tunisia and individual players are not prosecuted for playing at one of these.

 

 

Poker in Tunisia

 

Online Poker in Tunisia: illegal, players are not prosecuted

 

All the four brick and mortar casinos in Tunisia have Poker tables, however as mentioned earlier, these are only available for tourists playing in foreign currencies. Tunisian law doesn’t make any distinction between Poker and other forms of gambling, so outside these venues playing real money Poker is prohibited.

Online Poker is illegal as well, but the majority of the largest online Poker sites accepts the registrations of Tunisians and players are not prosecuted in the country.

 

 

Sports Betting in Tunisia

 

Online sports Betting in Tunisia: illegal, players are not prosecuted

 

Sports betting, as other forms of gambling, is illegal in Tunisia. However, its reported that a certain kind of betting game organised by Promosport, a public enterprise under the supervision of the Ministry of Youth, Sports and Physical Education can be legally played. 50% of the profits of the game go to the National Fund for the Promotion of Sports and Youth, 40% to winners and the remaining 10% covers the operational costs of Promosport*.

Although, the country has some nice thoroughbred tracks as well, betting is not allowed in these venues. Legally, visitors are only allowed to watch the races.

The state doesn’t issue licenses to commercial online sports betting operators. Despite it being basically illegal, many foreign sports books accept bets from Tunisia and authorities don’t seem to prosecute players.

 

 

*Source: Introducing a National Lottery in Tunisia: a Legal-Economic Study

 

Lottery in Tunisia

 

Online lottery in Tunisia: illegal, players are not prosecuted

 

Lotteries are prohibited by the Tunisian Gaming and Lotteries Act 20/74 of 24 October 1974*. There is no National Lottery in the country either. Lotteries can be approved by the authorities, if they are organised by certain societies or public organisations and if the profits support some charitable or societal cause only.

Playing foreign online lotteries is also illegal, but people who purchase lottery tickets on these sites don’t seem to be prosecuted.

 

*Source: Al Mawred – Introducing a National Lottery in Tunisia

 

Bitcoin Gambling in Tunisia

 

Bitcoin Gambling in Tunisia: illegal, players are not prosecuted

 

Bitcoin is legal in Tunisia but gambling and online gambling are not. Despite all this, Bitcoin casinos accept players from the country.

Moreover, many of these claim, that because Bitcoin is not ‘money’, gambling using the cryptocurrency is legal even in countries, that have prohibitive legal statutes in force. According to my research, the latter claim is at least dubious, but more likely untrue all together.

However, individual players of online gambling sites of any sort don’t appear to be prosecuted by the authorities in Tunisia.

 

 

 

Online gambling websites accepting players from Tunisia

 

While all forms of online gambling are prohibited by law in Tunisia, many of the major international operators accept registrations from the country and Tunisian players don’t seem to be prosecuted by the authorities.

 

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BGO casino – accepting players from Tunisia

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BGO online bookmaker accepting players from Tunisia

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32 Red casino accepting players from Tunisia

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32 Red online bookmaker, sports betting website accepting players from Tunisia

 

 

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This page is part of Simon’s List – Legal Status of Online Gambling – a definitive guide to the legal status of all forms of online gambling activities in every country around the world.

 

Last updated: 2015 10. 14

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Simon's Guide to Gambling and Casinos in Tunisia
Article Name
Simon's Guide to Gambling and Casinos in Tunisia
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Tunisia is one of the most secular Islamic states, however all forms of gambling are prohibited to residents. Only tourists can play at casinos.
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