Overview[edit | edit source]
Gambling is unlawful in Hong Kong unless specifically permitted by law. In May 2002, the Hong Kong Legislative Council voted to ban offshore gambling, including offshore Internet gambling, by passing the Gambling (Amendment) Ordinance. This law makes both offshore betting and bookmaking criminal offenses and provides for criminal penalties against offshore gambling agents that promote, facilitate, or advertise their products to Hong Kong residents.
The maximum punishment for brokers is seven (7) years in prison and a penalty of $5 million HKD ($641,000 USD), while individual bettors face 9 months in prison and a penalty of $30,000 HKD ($3,800 USD). However, it is legal for the Hong Kong Jockey Club — the legal gambling monopoly — to offer its services online to Hong Kong residents. The club solicits pari-mutuel bets from around the world and operates Hong Kong’s twice-weekly government lottery, the Mark 6. Hong Kong residents can legally place online pari-mutuel wagers with the club. The betting duty paid by the Jockey Club accounts for about 10% of government revenues.