The State Of Sports Betting in Malaysia

Malaysia: Rich in Culture, Strict on Its laws

When one is doing a comparison of various nations throughout the globe, looking at countries with distinct cultures will clearly result in a variety of contrasts regarding the activities that people like, the beliefs that they have, and the kind of entertainment that they partake in.

Comparing the movies produced by Hollywood, to the different types of entertainment found within the south Asian market, will leave you with enough differences and distinctions to be able to write an entire thesis and then some. That’s the beauty of our world, as it brings before us a litany of different cultures, all different from each other, and exploring a new one is one of the most beautiful things one can do, as it takes them out of their comfort zones and allows them to explore new horizons.

The State Of Sports Betting in Malaysia

One country which has one of the richest, most vibrant cultures out there in Malaysia. Malaysia is home to some of the most beautiful vistas, taste-bud-shattering delicacies, and a number of other factors which make it a perfect holiday destination for anyone looking to shake off the culture shock and experience a new and vibrant culture.

An aspect that Malaysia is extremely strict about, however, is the state of its laws. All areas of Malaysian law are highly regulated by their governments and the sector of gambling is no exception. Within this article, I will be going over the landscape of sports betting within Malaysia, with a particular reference to its regulation and the laws surrounding it. 

Malaysian Gambling Laws

Taking a look at the laws surrounding sports betting within Malaysia, it would be interesting to note that Malaysia follows a mixed legal system. A mixed legal system essentially entails a legal system that follows a mix of two different laws, and in Malaysia, we see this with Common law as well as Religious law, and Sharia law in Malaysia’s case.

Within Sharia Law, any form of gambling is seen as a sin against Allah and is therefore criminally punishable by the state of Malaysia. Gambling is known as Maisir and is highlighted in many points within the Quran as being against the will of Allah. 

Apart from religious laws, the Malaysia sports betting law is upheld by the 1953 Betting Act, Common Gaming Houses act, as well as the aforementioned Sharia Law. 

These laws essentially outlaw most forms of gambling, with some of the most prominent legal ways for one to gamble or make bets within Malaysia, is through pari-mutuel horse racing, as well as through the las-vegas style Genting highlands casino resort, which is only available to Non-Muslims over the age of 21.

Malaysia’s Outlook On Sports and Sports Betting

It’s common knowledge that people who live in the western hemisphere have a strong passion for a wide variety of athletic pursuits, including football (of both the American and British varieties), basketball, and tennis, to name just a few of these activities.

There is a lot of excitement, news, and controversy surrounding the upcoming World Cup, especially in countries like the United Kingdom, which are extremely enthusiastic and passionate about this competition.

Looking at Malaysia on the other hand, one would think that their love for sports wouldn’t really reach the highs of the west, but in truth, it is just as popular within Malaysia, if not more popular. From martial arts to horse riding and badminton, there exists a litany of sports that Malaysians enjoy, and with such a strong attachment to sports, many would want to enter the foray of sports betting. And how do they go about this?

Offshore Sportsbooks

Offshore sportsbooks are essentially sportsbooks that are licensed within countries such as curacao and Malta, amongst a number of others, and are made available all around the world. 

Because offshore sportsbooks do not necessarily fall under Malaysia’s Jurisdiction and are not exactly subject to the Malaysian legal system, they are a bit of a grey area within Malaysian law. On the other hand, Malaysia’s laws prohibit gambling in a blanket format, with the exception of the examples mentioned previously and lotteries. 

Offshore sportsbooks are one of the most popular among Malaysian bettors as a result of this, despite the fact that there are a significant number of disputes on whether or not the act of utilizing offshore sportsbooks is in fact legal.

Betting on Horse Races 

One of the most well-known ways for people to place bets in Malaysia while adhering to the country’s legal framework is the practice of pari-mutuel betting on horse races. This type of wagering is completely legal in Malaysia and is considered one of the most popular ways to gamble in the country.

Horse racing is governed by the common law aspect of Malaysia’s gambling laws. It also falls under a different set of laws than the rest of Malaysia’s gambling industry, which is governed by the Public Sweepstakes act of 1965. In Malaysia, horse racing is considered a form of gambling, but is one of the few which is completely legal, although betting with an illegal bookmaker is considered to be breaking the law, and anyone doing so will be subject to harsh penalties.

Final Thoughts

When it comes to the Sports Betting Sector in Malaysia, one thing that can be observed is that the laws that the country maintains in regard to sports betting and gambling take a more conservative stance towards sports betting. This is especially true given that betting on sports goes against the religion of over 60% of the country’s population.

That is not to say that the sports betting industry in Malaysia is extinct because the non-Muslim population, which accounts for forty percent of the country’s total population, has access to the luxuries of offshore sportsbooks, which are excellent for bets when they are placed with care and caution, as well as racetracks, which allow one to bet in a legal manner and let them keep their peace of mind.

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