Tajikistan is a mountainous, landlocked country in Central Asia with a population of around 8 million. It has borders with Afghanistan to the south, Uzbekistan to the west, Kyrgyzstan to the north, and China to the east. After the collapse of the Soviet Union (which Tajikistan was a part of) a civil war broke out in the country, which only ended in 1997. Tajikistan is currently a presidential republic.
All forms of gambling are illegal in the country and operators of illegal gambling dens face penalties of 6-8 years in prison and confiscation of properties*, which makes it a very bad bet to operate any gambling facility in the country. As a nation with a 99% Islamic population, Tajikistan is indeed not a ripe target for a gambling businesses, as in Islam, most any forms of gambling are strictly forbidden.
Online gambling – apart from being illegal – is also a not a good business opportunity in Tajikistan, as the internet penetration of the country was as low as 9.3% in 2010 and the country’s telecommunications network is among the least developed of all the post-soviet countries**.
There is also an internet monitoring and blocking system in force in the country, although, it targets mostly political content, news sites and social apps like Facebook, video sharing sites like YouTube and the Russian social networking site VKontakte. Online gambling is not a popular pastime in Tajikistan and the government allocates its resources accordingly when it comes to internet censorship.
However, it seems that playing is not criminalised by Tajik law, so players, who play on foreign online platforms are not prosecuted.
**Source: Internet Word Stats: Tajikistan
- Casino gambling in Tajikistan
- Bingo in Tajikistan
- Poker in Tajikistan
- Sports betting in Tajikistan
- Lottery in Tajikistan
- Bitcoin gambling in Tajikistan
- Online gambling websites accepting players from Tajikistan
Casino gambling in Tajikistan
Online casino gambling in Tajikistan: illegal
It comes as no surprise that currently, there are no casinos in Tajikistan, not even in the capital Dushanbe. Casino gambling is illegal in the country.
Online gambling is also illegal, although, there’s no info on whether the government prosecutes individual who play on foreign online sites. There are foreign online gambling websites which accept players from the country (see below).
Bingo in Tajikistan
Online Bingo in Tajikistan: illegal
Bingo is not a game of the Islamic world. Even in Muslim countries with legal and regulated gambling, bingo halls are non existent. Needless to say, there are no land based bingo halls in Tajikistan either.
Online bingo is unheard of in the country and it is technically illegal.
Poker in Tajikistan
Online Poker in Tajikistan: illegal
Poker – as all other forms of land based gambling – is prohibited by law. There are no poker clubs or poker tournaments in the country.
Online, it’s a different story. The government would not allow any online poker site to within Tajikistan, but players are welcome on foreign poker platforms.
Sports Betting in Tajikistan
Online sports Betting in Tajikistan: illegal
Wagering on the outcome of sporting events is illegal in Tajikistan, just like all other forms of gambling. There are no land based sports books in the country.
There are no online bookies either, catering directly for the Tajik market. However, many of the biggest foreign online sports books are available for punters from Tajikistan.
Lottery in Tajikistan
Online lottery in Tajikistan: unknown, potentially legal, but not regulated currently
In Tajikistan, the Ministry of Finance has the right to license a state lottery, although I found no info on whether there is one operating at the time of writing or not (this makes lottery the only form of gambling not outright banned in the country).
Online lottery is again, probably not a real issue with such a small portion of the populace having access to the internet. However, the legislation does not currently mention online lotteries in any form whatsoever.
However,Tajik players who choose to play on foreign online lotteries face no penalties in the country.
Bitcoin Gambling in Tajikistan
Bitcoin Gambling in Tajikistan: illegal
In Tajikistan, one of the poorest countries of Asia, the government doesn’t seem to be actively regulating Bitcoin and other digital currencies (online gambling is also not an issue).
The government doesn’t seem to expressly ban Bitcoin. However, gambling is illegal, making Bitcoin gambling most likely illegal as well.
On the other hand, it’s safe to assume that a Tajik player who places bets on foreign Bitcoin gambling websites would not get prosecuted by the authorities, because of the anonymous nature of Bitcoin gambling.
Online gambling websites accepting players from Tajikistan
Although Tajik laws prohibit all forms of land based gambling (except lottery) there are still foreign online gambling websites which accept players from the country.
Last updated: 2015. 10. 22.