Will New Zealand Regulate the Online Gambling Market?

Business » INDUSTRY | April 8, 2024, Monday // 15:58
Bulgaria: Will New Zealand Regulate the Online Gambling Market? xiSerge from Pixabay

Online gambling and casinos are becoming quite the attraction for players and enthusiasts alike. Casinos are becoming a common sight, and even when casinos cannot solve a person’s gambling, the alternative is online gambling. It is, therefore, no wonder that these casinos are developing online gambling solutions that will help them keep their customers and satisfy them as well as possible.

For businesses and gambling enthusiasts in New Zealand, there is no shortage of options for gambling and iGaming. Due to this proliferation, New Zealand's government has decided to introduce laws to help protect players.

In this article, we address different steps taken by the New Zealand government to ensure the online gambling market is a haven for players.

The Case as It Stands

Gambling in New Zealand is just like the rest of the world; you can enter a casino and pick your chips, so long as you are twenty years old. The famed SkyCity Auckland is just one of numerous physical casinos in the country, and the environment is set to shift due to the influx of offshore online gambling websites that Kiwis can access and have fun whenever and wherever.

What Does the Law Say?

In New Zealand, the law concerning gambling is straightforward, all thanks to The Gaming Act of 2003. As previously mentioned, you must be twenty years old to gamble. Gambling involves all kinds—slots, horse racing, and lottery tickets—and New Zealand keeps a good record of gambling figures to ensure it is always on top of it. But does that work? Well, let’s find out.

When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, many New Zealanders could not hit the gaming tables due to curfews and decided to turn their attention and money to online gambling sites to maintain a semblance of normalcy during these times. After all, the average New Zealander spends close to $650 on gambling each year. At the time, only two businesses in the country had the license to offer gambling services – Lotto and TAB.

As players moved online, these two companies and the government sought to protect players and maintain a safe environment for all kinds of New Zealand Casinos. Hence, all New Zealanders looking to gamble with licensed companies had to follow certain rules and limits. But why was this structure introduced?

Why the Government Uses This Approach

The government of New Zealand continues to design ways and structures to ensure the activities of online casinos are checked to ensure safety of individuals who want to enjoy their favorite games and make some money. If you are puzzled as to why the New Zealand government uses this approach, here are some ways:

  • Winnings from gambling (physical and virtual) are not taxed, even when won by businesses outside New Zealand. However, they must be collected by due process. Also, winnings paid in cryptocurrency are taxed, but there might be changes soon.

  • To claim winnings of over $1000, you must go through a claims process to ensure the right person gets the money and dissuade all forms of money laundering. Winnings of less than $1000 can be claimed at local lottery locations.

  • The two companies in charge of online gambling are required to give back to society by educating citizens about the best practices for online gambling and related events. As part of the agreement with the government, they also support beneficial initiatives.

All of these are done to help the government monitor gambling statistics and adjust regulations and limits accordingly in partnership with the Department of Internal Affairs and the Ministry of Health. In empowering and monitoring these two companies, New Zealanders do not need to place bets and gamble on websites the government does not support.

While it is true that these unsupported websites offer more features and promotions than TAB NZ and Lotto NZ, players know the dangers that come with this and usually back off. This has helped the country to recoup a good percentage of the profits from gambling into the country’s coffers.

So, it was no surprise to find that, according to statistics, only a meager 0.2% of the country's citizens are addicted to gambling. New Zealanders now see gambling as a hobby rather than to increase income. This is a good template that other countries and regions can copy and apply to control gambling and create a safe space for online gamers.


So, yes, New Zealand will regulate the online gambling market. However, it will be a good plus for the gaming environment and the country. The country looks set to increase its profits accrued from its strategy towards gambling while also maintaining a low rate of gambling addiction among gambling enthusiasts and players. If you are a New Zealander looking to get into the online gambling space, now’s the time. Stay safe and play safe!


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