Simon’s Madagascar Casino and Gambling Guide

Picture of Madagascar's capital city, Antananarivo. Gambling is legal and regulated in the country.

Madagascar Casino and Gambling Guide


Madagascar, officially the Republic of Madagascar (previously known as the Malagasy Republic) is an island country located in the Indian Ocean off the coast of Southeast Africa. The country comprises of the island of Madagascar and a couple smaller peripheral islands. Madagascar’s capital and largest city is Antananarivo with a little more than 1,6 million residents. Madagascar’s official languages are Malagasy and French. Madagascar’s population consists of a wide variety of ethnic groups like Merina, Betsimisaraka, and Betsileo to name a few. In 2012, Madagascar’s population was estimated at around 22 million. The dominant religions in the country are Christianity and local, traditional beliefs.

Madagascar split from the Indian peninsula around 88 million years ago, allowing native plants and animals to evolve relatively isolated. Because of this, Madagascar is a hotspot for biodiversity as almost 90% of the country’s wildlife is found nowhere else on Earth.

Before Madagascar was absorbed into the French colonial empire in the late 19th century, it was ruled by nobles as a monarchy (Kingdom of Madagascar). The French rule resulted in the abolishment of slavery, improved infrastructure, economy and education amongst others. The occupation of France during World War II sparked the independence movement which resulted in the Malagasy Uprising of 1947.  The country became independent in 1960. After gaining independence, Madagascar has transitioned through 4 major republics with corresponding revisions to the constitution. Since 1992, the country is governed as a constitutional democracy from the capital city of Antananarivo.  The current constitution is intact since 2010. Nowadays, Madagascar’s main development strategy involves the improvement of agriculture, ecotourism, and a greater investment in healthcare and education.

Gambling appears to be legal in Madagascar as 2 land-based casinos are operating there currently (the Carlton Madagascar and the Colbert Hotel & Casino). However, there is little to no information about the status of online gambling in the country. It is not illegal that’s for sure, but not regulated like the land-based operations either. Therefore, the only option for players from Madagascar is to visit an offshore online casino where they are accepted.


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Casino gambling in Madagascar


Online casino gambling in Madagascar: not regulated


Land-based gambling is regulated by the government. Just operators with proper licences can conduct such activities. There are currently 2 land-based casinos in the country (the Carlton Madagascar and the Colbert Hotel & Casino) offering the most popular games like roulette, poker, blackjack, and slot machines to name a few. It appears that online gambling is not regulated, though. However, players from Madagascar are accepted in numerous offshore online casinos to try out their luck.



Bingo in Madagascar


Online bingo in Madagascar: not regulated


Bingo is one of the most popular games in the world, especially in the United States. Despite its worldwide popularity, there aren’t any land-based bingo halls available in Madagascar. It’s okay, though, because players from Madagascar can enjoy a good bingo game in numerous offshore online casinos. Online gambling is not yet regulated in Madagascar so there aren’t any domestic operators as of now in the country.



Poker in Madagascar


Online poker in Madagascar: not regulated


Poker is quite possibly the most popular casino game ever created. Its ever growing popularity can be traced back to the constant television broadcasts and regularly held world championships. Many would argue that poker is a game of skill rather than a game of chance but in nature, poker still counts as a form of gambling as it is mostly played in casinos. Malagasy players can enjoy poker in the land-based establishments or try out their luck (or skills) in numerous foreign online casinos.


Sports betting in Madagascar


Online sports betting in Madagascar: not regulated


Sports betting is a pretty common form of gambling around the world. Betting on sports appears to be legal in Madagascar as the country has annual horse races tracing back to the French colonial days. However, online gambling is not yet regulated in the country. Therefore, players from Madagascar “have” to bet at foreign online bookmakers if they want to play online and from the comfort of their homes.



Lottery in Madagascar


Online lottery in Madagascar: not regulated


The lottery is arguably the most common form of gambling around the world. It is safe to say that where gambling is legal there is a lottery. However, Madagascar does not have a national lottery as of now. Online gambling is not regulated in the country, so there is no domestic online lottery either. Malagasy players can enjoy all kinds of lotteries, however, in numerous offshore online casinos. Some reports suggest that Madagascar struck a deal with a company to conduct online lotteries, but there is no official information on the matter at the moment, though.



Bitcoin gambling in Madagascar


Bitcoin gambling in Madagascar: not regulated


Bitcoin is a digital currency often referred to as a “cryptocurrency” invented back in 2008. It quickly gained worldwide popularity as an alternative form of payment. Bitcoin gambling appeared shortly after the introduction of the digital currency. It continues to grow in popularity as more and more online casinos started to specialize in it. However, Bitcoin is still a relatively new phenomenon so only just a handful of countries issued laws concerning it. Some countries see Bitcoin as an asset rather than a currency (like Norway for example). As of now, there are no specific laws in Madagascar concerning Bitcoin gambling or Bitcoin in general. Technically, Bitcoin gambling falls into the online gambling genre (due to most of the trades occur via the internet) which is not regulated in Madagascar yet. However, many offshore online casinos specialized in Bitcoin accept players from Madagascar, though.



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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: 2016.01.21.

Simon's Madagascar Casino and Gambling Guide
Article Name
Simon's Madagascar Casino and Gambling Guide
An overview of gambling's legal status in Madagascar.

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