Simon’s Guide to Gambling in Kyrgyzstan

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A beautiful view of a landscape in Kyrgyzstan. Gambling is illegal in the country.

Guide to Gambling in Kyrgyzstan

 

Kyrgyzstan, officially the Kyrgyz Republic (formerly known as Kirghizia) is a landlocked country located in Central Asia. Kyrgyzstan shares borders with Kazakhstan to the north, Uzbekistan to the west, Tajikistan to the southwest, and China to the east. The estimated population of the country is 6 million. The country’s capital and largest city is Bishkek with around 940,000 residents. The dominant religions in Kyrgyzstan are Islam and Russian Orthodox. The countries official languages are Kyrgyz and Russian.

 

All forms of gambling (including online) are illegal in Kyrgyzstan since 2011.* Therefore, all land-based and online gambling providers had to close their doors. It was an interesting decision as the gambling industry was successful in the country and provided ample tax revenue for the government as well as jobs for citizens. Kyrgyzstan is one of the poorest countries in Asia so it can be assumed that they could have used the money. So as of now, there are no land-base casinos operating in the country offering the popular games like poker, blackjack and roulette to name a few. The main reason behind the banning of gambling is the countries dominant religion of Islam. According to the Islamic teachings, gambling is evil, addicting and a cause for people to forget their social responsibilities. However, some reports suggest that Kyrgyzstan may allow gambling for tourists but there is little to no information when it will (if it ever will) materialise. The banning of gambling paved the way for illegal gambling and it is a huge problem for the government today. As of now, players from Kyrgyzstan are accepted in numerous foreign online casinos to play. There is no reliable information if players are going to be prosecuted or not if playing in an offshore online casino.

 

 

*BBC News: Kyrgyzstan Parliament Bans Gambling

 

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Casino gambling in Kyrgyzstan

 

Online casino gambling in Kyrgyzstan: illegal

 

The casino business helped Kyrgyzstan’s economy as it gave a big tax revenue to the government. However, the government decided to ban gambling altogether in 2011. All the land-base casinos offered the popular games like poker, roulette, and blackjack had to close their doors. However, there are some reports suggesting that gambling could be allowed for tourists in the future, but as of now, there’s not much information on this matter. Online gambling is banned too, but players from Kyrgyzstan are still accepted in many offshore online casinos. There is no information whether players are going to be prosecuted or not if playing in an offshore online casino.

 

 

Bingo in Kyrgyzstan

 

Online bingo in Kyrgyzstan: illegal

 

Bingo is not popular in Kyrgystan. In Kyrgyzstan, gambling is illegal, so there aren’t any land-based or domestic online bingo halls where players can enjoy the game. Rumours say that the government may legalize gambling again in the future, but for now it is just speculation.

 

 

Poker in Kyrgyzstan

 

Online poker in Kyrgyzstan: illegal

 

Poker is quite possibly the most popular card game game ever created. The main reasons behind its ever growing popularity are the constant television broadcasts, 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. Therefore in some countries poker is not considered gambling. Poker is considered illegal in Kyrgyzstan, so there aren’t any land-based or online establishments where you could play poker. However, players from Kyrgyzstan are accepted in numerous offshore online casinos, though. It appears that those players are not prosecuted, but there is nothing official on the matter.

 

Sports betting in Kyrgyzstan

 

Online sports betting in Kyrgyzstan: illegal

 

Sports betting is one of the most popular forms of gambling out there. Sports betting was also popular in Kyrgyzstan until the banning of gambling in the early 2010s. Since then, the only option for players from Kyrgyzstan is to visit an offshore online bookmaker.

 

 

Lottery in Kyrgyzstan

 

Online lottery in Kyrgyzstan: illegal

Arguably, the lottery is the most common form of gambling in the world. it is safe to say that where gambling is legal there is a national lottery. The Kyrgyz government banned gambling altogether in 2011, so there is little to no chance for a national lottery to be issued in the near future. Kyrgyzstan is currently one of the few countries, where there is no lottery.

 

 

Bitcoin gambling in Kyrgyzstan

 

Bitcoin gambling in Kyrgyzstan: illegal

 

As of now, Kyrgyzstan does not have any specific laws concerning Bitcoin gambling or Bitcoin in general. It can be assumed that Bitcoin gambling is illegal as the government banned all forms of gambling a couple years ago.

 

 

 

 

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: 2016.02.01.

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