Simon’s Guide to Gambling in Kiribati

Picture of an island of Kiribati. Gambling is legal and regulated in the country, however, online gambling is not yet regulated.

Guide to Gambling in Kiribati


Kiribati, officially the Republic of Kiribati is an island nation located in the central Pacific Ocean. The country comprises of 33 atolls, reef islands, and a raised coral island, Banaba. Kiribati’s population is just over 100,000 citizens, half of them living in the Tarawa atoll. The country’s capital is Tarawa, which is an island in itself. Kiribati’s official languages are English and Gilbertese. The dominant religion is Christianity (Roman Catholic) due to the missionaries during the 19th century. The nation is not diverse ethnically as more than 98% of the population is Micronesian. Kiribati does not have a military, it relies on Australia and New Zeland for its defence. The Republic of Kiribati is one of the poorest countries in the world. Its economy relies heavily on foreign aid.

The first European ships arrived in the late 17th century. The territory became a British colony in the late 19th century as Gilbert and Ellice Islands. Kiribati, during World War II, got occupied by Japanese forces until 1943, when the US forces drove them out in one of the bloodiest battles in World War II, the Battle of Tarawa. After World War II, the country remained a British colony and was used by the British and the United States for nuclear weapons testing. The Gilbert Islands became independent as the Republic of Kiribati 1979. Since then, Kiribati gained membership in multiple organizations like the Commonwealth of Nations, the IMF, the World Bank, and the United Nations.

Gambling in Kiribati is legal and regulated since the Gaming and Lotteries Act of 1988.* However, there aren’t any lands based casinos currently operating on the islands. Online gambling is not yet regulated so the only option for players to play online is to visit an offshore online casino.


If you like the article, give it a +1!


*Gaming and Lotteries Act of 1988





Casino gambling in Kiribati


Online casino gambling in Kiribati: not regulated


Gambling became legal in Kiribati due to the Gaming and Lotteries Act of 1988. This act gives a legal background on how to conduct gambling in the country. However, there is not much information about casino gambling there, so it’s not clear whether it’s legal or not to operate one in Kiribati. On the other hand, games of chance like lotteries, bingo, and sports betting are completely legal if the operator meets the requirements. Online gambling is not yet regulated but players can enjoy all the popular casino games like poker, blackjack, and roulette for example in numerous offshore online casinos.



Bingo in Kiribati


Online bingo in Kiribati: not regulated


Bingo is a quite popular game amongst players around the world, especially in the United States. Bingo is legal in Kiribati but unfortunately, there are no land-based bingo halls in the country at the moment. Online gambling is not yet regulated, so the only option for players from Kiribati to enjoy a good bingo game is to visit an offshore online casino. Numerous foreign online casinos accept players from Kiribati.



Poker in Kiribati


Online poker in Kiribati: not regulated


Poker is quite possibly the most popular casino game ever created. The main reasons behind its ever growing popularity are the constant television broadcasts, the regularly held world championships, and its competitive nature. Many would argue that poker requires more skill than luck but it still counts as a form of gambling. Although gambling is legal in Kiribati there aren’t any casinos in the country offering poker tables to players. Online gambling is not regulated yet, so the only way for players to enjoy a good poker game is to visit an offshore online casino.


Sports betting in Kiribati


Online sports betting in Kiribati: not regulated


Kiribati competes in the Commonwealth Games since 1988 and the Summer Olympics since 2004. In 2014, an I-Kiribati weightlifter won the gold medal in the Commonwealth games, the biggest success in the country’s sports history. Sports betting is one of the most popular forms of gambling in the world. Sports betting is legal in Kiribati if the bookmaker acquired the proper licences to operate. Online gambling is not yet regulated in the country, so the only option for players from Kiribati is to visit an offshore online casino.



Lottery in Kiribati


Online lottery in Kiribati: not regulated

The lottery is arguably the most common form of gambling out there. It is safe to say that where gambling is legal there is a national lottery. The main governing body of the lottery in Kiribati was established in 1988 as the Kiribati National Lottery Board. However, there is little to no information online if there is a regularly drawn lottery or not as of now. Online gambling is not yet regulated so players from Kiribati “have” to visit an offshore online casino to play. Numerous foreign online casinos accept I-Kiribati players.



Bitcoin gambling in Kiribati


Bitcoin gambling in Kiribati: not regulated


Bitcoin is a digital currency often referred to as a “cryptocurrency” first introduced in 2008. It quickly became popular worldwide as an alternative mean of payment. Bitcoin gambling appeared shortly after the inception of the currency and continues to gain popularity as more and more online casinos started to specialize in it. Because Bitcoin is still a relatively new phenomenon only just a handful of countries issued laws concerning it. Some countries, like Norway or Lithuania, see Bitcoin as an asset rather than a currency. Bitcoin trades (due to the currency’s digital nature) mostly occur via the internet so technically Bitcoin gambling falls into the online gambling genre which is not regulated in Kiribati yet. As of now, there aren’t any specific laws in Kiribati concerning Bitcoin gambling or Bitcoin in general. Many offshore online casinos accept players from Kiribati.



If you like the article, give it a +1!


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: 2016.02.02.

Simon's Guide to Gambling in Kiribati
Article Name
Simon's Guide to Gambling in Kiribati
An overview of gambling's legal status in Kiribati.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *