With many South East Asian countries banning the use of their national currency for any type of gambling activities, it has meant that online casinos have become out of bounds. In places such as Indonesia and Thailand online casinos are not allowed to accept Thai Baht or Malaysian Ringgit. However, Bitcoin and other cryptos can be legally traded in almost all South East Asian territories meaning that cryptocurrency casinos are an option.
With the financial laws in regards to online gambling imposed in many South East Asian countries, citizens have found themselves restricted from playing at any online casinos. There are only to main options available to gamble at an online casino using fiat currencies.
1. Open a bank account in a country that allows online gambling: The issue here is that not many countries make it easy to open a bank account for non-native citizens. The other issues are that once the bank account is open, the player will need to show proof of address to any fiat currency online casino at some point during their membership. Both these obstacles put up barriers that are quite tough to get around unless the casino player has ways of getting around them; such as, a family member living in the country the bank opened in.
2. Use an online casino agent: Online casino agents are middlemen that have connections with online casinos. The agent will have a series of accounts opened with the casino. The citizens that want to gamble will need to open an account with the casino agent and make a deposit with the casino agent. This, of course, comes with its own risks. Citizens are not protected by any laws, and should they win a large jackpot win, there is nothing stopping unscrupulous agents from keeping their members’ jackpot wins.
Option 1 is not a viable one for most people because opening a bank account in the United Kingdom, Hong Kong, or any other country where many fiat currency online casinos accept members from poses too many challenges for the average person. Option 2 is clearly too risky.
At the end of the day, gambling online prior to the invention of cryptocurrencies was almost impossible for most South East Asian citizens.
Cryptocurrencies are now available to practically any citizen in South East Asia. Some countries still have a ban on cryptocurrencies, but there are still cryptocurrency wallets available to citizens. In almost every country there is a solution provided to convert the local currency into cryptocurrencies with Bitcoin being the most popularly accepted virtual currency.
In Indonesia, there is a ban on cryptocurrencies, yet the Indodax Exchange is very much up and running for Bitcoin, Ethereum and Ripple users. They have an office in Jakarta and happily serve the Indonesian market. Hardware wallets are also popular in Indonesia once the exchange from Rupiah to Bitcoin has been made.
Thailand has a ban on using Baht for gambling. However, the country recently legalized cryptocurrencies and has further explained its stance by allowing 7 cryptocurrencies to be traded against the Thai Baht. Right now Bitcoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum Classic, Litecoin, Ripple, and Stellar have all been legalized by the Securities and Exchange Commission of Thailand as per a Bitcoin.com report.
There are plenty of wallets available for Thai citizens, but not all of them allow people to fund online casinos, so a transfer from a Thai wallet to a hardware wallet, then to a cryptocurrency casino is the best way to converts Thai baht to crypto in order to fund a cryptocurrency casino.
Cambodia has an outright ban on cryptocurrencies, but gambling online in the country is legal using US$, so citizens here have never had to worry about looking for an alternative. That said, most people that do trade in cryptocurrencies in Cambodia use hardware wallets such as Ledger or Trezor.
Singapore is one of the world’s most financially open-minded countries. In 2013 the Monetary Authority of Singapore said that they would not interfere with businesses that wanted to accept cryptocurrencies as a form of payment. Furthermore, online gambling has always been legal here so both cryptocurrency and fiat currency online gambling is not a problem for Singaporean citizens.
Malaysia has a ban on all online gambling, but cryptocurrencies are perfectly legal. This means that the transfer of Ringgit to crypto is easy. Once the cryptocurrency is available, it can be sent to a hardware wallet and used to find an online cryptocurrency casino account.
The laws in regards to online gambling in the Philippines are confusing. So much so that no one seems to be able to confirm nor deny the legality of online gambling in the country. Therefore, as cryptocurrencies are perfectly legal in the Philippines, citizens are easily able to convert Pesos into crypto and use a cryptocurrency wallet that makes it viable to fund an online casino account.
VBTC and Bitcoin Vietnam both happily operate in Vietnam as it is legal to trade and hold cryptos in Vietnam. However, there are no regulations in place in regards to using cryptos as a legal payment method. According to Vietnamese law, cryptocurrencies are an illegal payment method. Either way, there are ways to exchange Vietnamese Dong into crypto to be made available for online cryptocurrency casino gaming in a country where the legality of online gambling is somewhat of a “grey zone” in the country right now.
Brunei’s stance on cryptocurrencies is much the same as Vietnam. The one issues in Brunei that never seems to have a concrete answer is the legality of online gambling. Once again much like Vietnam. Some fiat currency online casinos accept citizens from Brunei, while some do not. That said, local citizens are easily able to use US$ and exchange these into cryptocurrency, and further on from this, they are able to find cryptocurrency casino accounts.
Despite online gambling laws and some restrictions on cryptocurrencies in a few of the South East Asian countries, it seems that citizens in almost every country in this sub-continent are able to use cryptocurrencies to gamble online.
Furthermore, they are able to use local exchanges and crypto wallets to move their cryptocurrencies around, fund cryptocurrency casino accounts as well as exchange cryptos from the to and from their local currency. One of the most popular ways to fund cryptocurrency casinos without risking account closure is to transfer the crypto to a hardware wallet. The hardware wallet can then be used to transfer crypto to play online slots, table games, live casino games, and many other casino games that are available to cryptocurrency casino players.
Whether online gambling is legal or illegal in any of the South East Asian countries, it seems cryptocurrencies offer the perfect solution. The laws on using crypto apparently have not been written in these countries, and cryptos are not exactly legal tender as of yet, and so the grey area between legal and illegal can be exploited in a continent where online gambling was generally not an option to the average citizen.
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