Gambling and casinos in Malaysia

In Malaysia there is only one place in which gambling is legal. It is casino found in Genting Highlight Resort in enormous complex situated on picturesque hill in Pahang, close to country’s capital - Kuala Lumpur.



History of casinos in Malaysia

Gambling in Malaysia appeared at the beginning of 19th century because of chinese merchants. Gambling taken over from the Chinese quickly became popular here. In colonial times, when Malaysia was under British influence horse racing were introduced. First and the only legal casino in Malaysia was created from the initiative of malaysian conglomerate “Genting Group”. His founder, Tan Sri Lim Goh Tong, in 1969, submitted to the then prime minister - Tunku Abdul Rahman - a request to grant license for a casino which was to emerge. The request was accepted, licence was granted, and in 1971 Casino de Genting was officially opened. During the following years, because of the casino development, it was moved to different locations in Gentling Highlights Resort, to finally find its place in First World Hotel on November 26th, 2004.

First and the only legal casino in Malaysia was created from the initiative of Malaysian conglomerate “Genting Group” whose founder was Tan Sri Lim Goh Tong.

Legal Regulations
Gambling in Malaysia is regulated by Common Gaming House Act from 1953, together with changes introduced on January 1st 2006. The control over casino is exercises by The Ministry of Finance which is also responsible for granting licences. However Malaysian government announced in 2003 that it will not grant licences to any casinos, and that for the time being Casino de Genting will remain without competition on Malaysian gambling market. Because Malaysia is muslim country, and under Sharia law, Muslims cannot participate in gambling, entrance to the casino is possible only to non-Muslim believes. The minimum age for casino admission is 21 years old.

Because Malaysia is a Muslim country, and in accordance with Sharia law, muslims cannot take part in gambling, that’s why only non-muslim people may enter.

Where, when and what to play in casinos in Malaysia?
Malaysia Casino de Genting which is situated in Genting Highlights Resort is in Pahang, on the hill, about 1800 meters above the sea level. It is 50 kilometers away from country’s capital - Kuala Lumpur, however because it is located on a hill, it isn’t easy to get there. Casino de Genting is opened 24/7. Players in the offer will find games such as poker, roulette, baccarat, blackjack, Ponton, Pai Gown and more than 3000 slot machines.

From Genting Highlights Resort to Malaysia’s capital - Kuala Lumpur - there is about an hour drive (50 km), however because the casino is located on a hill the road is not easy to travel.

Cities in which land based casinos are found:

  • Pahang


Internet Casinos in Malaysia

In Malaysia there are no legal online casinos. Although the Genting Group offer Internet casino, Malaysian players don’t have access to it. Other online casinos which were established in Malaysia are illegal. Players which want to enjoy online casinos use the offer of the overseas ones, which are available in Malaysia, and even though the government is against it, it does not take any radical steps to fully ban gambling online. Players are not scared away by the fact, that banks limit transactions to and from websites offering gambling online. It is not strictly enforced, that’s why malaysian players use services of overseas casinos which are available to them in English, currencies includes American dollar and Malaysian ringgit.

Casinos online are prohibited on Malaysian territory, but playing at overseas bookmakers is not banned, however the government tries to limit their access.

Legal regulations
Although in Malaysian act regulating casinos activity casinos online are not mentioned, they are acknowledged as illegal. No regulations in the means of specific laws contributes to Malaysian players using casinos online located out of Malaysia.


Best Malaysian poker players

Poker is very popular in Malaysia, and even “Poker Millionaires” have appeared here. A player which up till now has won the most in poker in Richard Yong, with $2 820 463 won. Right behind him is Mervin Chan with $1 692 265. Third place goes to Paul Phua, who in all poker tournaments together won $894 069.

Struggle with illegal gambling online in Malaysia
Although in Malaysia casinos online are prohibited, they still exist. Government has takes steps to deal with people offering illegal gambling online on Malaysian territory. In 2013, during one of the police action directed against those engaged in online casinos, 24 people,  which in the province of Labuan, allowed gambling in illegal casinos, were detained. Police confiscated almost 80 computers, cash and documents.