Papua New Guinea is not a country that a great deal of people know about. Situated on an island that it jointly shares with Indonesia, it is officially an Oceanian country. Holding a population of about 7.3 million people, one would think that it’s quite a nice location for online gambling to take a hold. With over 800 languages spoken there, this could have somewhat of an impact on Papua New Guineans being able to successfully navigate their way around an online platform, although English is one of the main languages.
Can You Gamble Online from Within Papua New Guinea?
As it happens, the short answer to this is yes. In fact, both online and offline gambling are legal in the country. The Gaming Control Bill was passed in the year of 2007, ensuring that everything related to casinos, sportsbooks, lotteries etc was and still is lawful. Therefore, residents of Papua New Guinea can freely access a wide range of casino games and more, either via a land-based establishment or online.
Online casinos within the country are able to apply for and receive licences to operate from the Gaming Control Board. Additionally, there is nothing in place to stop citizens from accessing offshore platforms either and the government within doesn’t really have any issues with its people doing so. Despite having over 800 languages in action, the three main ones (and official languages) exist in the form of English, Tok Pisin (English-based Creole) and Hiri Motu. With this being the case, residents of the country will be able to easily access a strong range of online platforms.
The best PNG sites
Papua New Guineans are lucky in the fact many online casinos offer their services to this region, with many of the world’s leading software companies available. Some of our personal favourites are Royal Vegas Casino, Mucho Vegas and Jackpot City.
PNG casino sites
Casino bonus offers
Many online casinos will give you a bonus simply for signing up and making a deposit, some will even give you free spins or a small bonus without making a deposit. These offers usually come with some wagering requirements, meaning you have to bet the money a certain amount of times before you can withdraw it. 40x for instance.
Always do your homework when accepting a bonus offer and make sure that the requirements to withdraw are reasonable and fair. Another key thing to look out for as a PNG citizen is whether the casino you are depositing at gives the bonus to people from your country. You can find more information about each casino we recommend via the links in the table above.
Kina deposit options
Being such a specific country, not many online platforms will incorporate the possibility for players to deposit in Kina. Therefore, it’s more likely that players from within Papua New Guinea will need to use US or Australian Dollars, which the Kina will be converted to for a small fee. Deposit and withdrawal options do vary from casino to casino, however some of the accepted methods of depositing include:
- Credit and Debit Cards: Visa, MasterCard
- eWallets: Neteller, Skrill
- Bank Transfers: Bank Wire Transfer
Overall Gambling Status in Papua New Guinea
Prior to 2007, all forms of gambling were completely banned and deemed illegal by the government. Therefore, at that time, residents could not access any form of money wagering games. It was only during former Prime Minister Michael Somare’s time in office that both land-based and online gambling was legalised in the Pacific nation. This came into effect with the aforementioned Gambling Control Bill of 2007.
Things started out fairly slow for the country as far as uptake in online gambling was concerned. However, over the years it has slowly gained traction and now, more people than ever are turning towards online casinos and sportsbooks for a pastime hobby. The country itself has been seeing annual economic expansions of 9-10 percent, making it one of the globe’s fastest-growing nations. The increasing wealth of citizens in Papua New Guinea is testament to how strongly it has been growing and with over 900,000 users online, things are expanding at even faster rates. Likewise, the mobile sector of the country has also seen its fair share of expansion, leading to even more access to online casinos.
Obviously, the industry remains legal to this day and Papua New Guinea is set to see its gambling sector continue gaining popularity with citizens. Additionally, alternative payment methods such as Neteller and Skrill are gaining their own level of vast interest with players from the country.
PNG online casino and gambling laws
It’s simple to say that gambling is legal in Papua New Guinea, although there’s a little more to it than that. While casinos, internet gaming, lotteries and certain types of gaming machines are all legal, there are one or two exceptions to the law in the country. For example, Asian horse-racing-themed gambling machines are deemed completely illegal within. This is due to the fact that in 2001, it was discovered that these machines had a link to organised crime within the continent of Asia. Not only that, but these same discoveries found that senior policemen were working alongside Asian businessmen who operated these machines.
Back in 2004, operators of illegal gaming machine facilities were given 36 hours in which to cease all business relating to such. Those who failed to comply with this request were arrested and had machines confiscated. Prior to the introduction of the laws in 2007, several casinos were operating illegally. For example, 2005 saw an illegal casino raided in Port Moresby. At this time, over 500 items that were associated with gambling went on to be seized and destroyed.
The Gambling Control Act of 2007 was passed through office with a 6-1 vote however, which legalised both land-based and online gambling. As stated, this also incorporated overseas platforms and furthermore, it allowed for the creation of the National Gaming Control Board. It is this organisation that regulates and monitors the industry in Papua New Guinea.
As far as the licensed operators go, they are able to hold a casino licence for 10 years in one of the 20 different provinces of the country. A 20% gross tax revenue is also enacted on such, as well as an additional 5% tax, which is returned to communities where instances of problem gambling are at their peaks.
With the legalisation of gambling in the country, 2007 saw a Korean consortium take the first steps towards this new industry. The idea was to build a multi-million-dollar casino complex in the capital city, although still to this day, there aren’t any brick-and-mortar sites within. Despite the legality of gambling, several high-profile politicians have spoken out against it in the passing years. This has even led to the Papua New Guinean government being accused of severe corruption.