Legalizing Online Casinos: Who’s Next to Join the Game?

As the iGaming industry continues to grow, many governments around the world are reconsidering their approach towards gambling, and it’s easy to see why. The potential for economic growth if countries adjust their legislation in favour of iGaming is immense.  New Zealand is a prime candidate for embracing digital gambling. Other regions across Asia, Africa, and the Americas are also poised to explore similar regulatory changes. Here’s a breakdown of the current status quo and speculation on the potential future for iGaming’s global legalization.

New Zealand’s Balancing Act:

New Zealand offers a compelling case study. While traditional casinos and the state lottery are legal, online gambling remains in the shadows. This disconnect exists because the Gambling Act of 2003 doesn’t address digital platforms. Kiwis spend millions on offshore sites, such as those on this list compiled by Techopedia writer Sam Barnard. This has been encouraging the government to consider a more sustainable approach. A 2019 review by the Department of Internal Affairs review could pave the way for a legalized and regulated online gambling market, capturing tax revenue and protecting consumers from unregulated offshore operators. While the consultation concluded in 2020, there are yet to be any concrete legislative proposals (as of June 2024). However, the Department of Internal Affairs website is an excellent resource for checking for updates on the ongoing process.

The USA: A Patchwork of Regulation

The United States presents a fascinating example of a fragmented legal system across 50 states. Following the Supreme Court’s 2018 decision to overturn the federal ban on sports betting, individual states now hold the reins on online gambling. This landmark decision led to a surge in legalization. Over 20 states have since embraced online sports betting, and some, like New Jersey and Pennsylvania, are experiencing significant success in their online casino markets. This trend shows no signs of abating, and the sleeping giant, California, with its vast population and established gambling culture, could be next in line. Its potential legalization could set a powerful precedent for the nation.

Other Contenders on the Global Gambling Floor:

Several other countries are also weighing the potential benefits of online gambling legalization:

Japan: The nation recently legalized casino gambling in a limited capacity, with the first integrated resort casino in Japan opening in July 2023 in Yokohama. The history of gambling in Japan is long and fascinating, and the success of integrated casino resorts could influence policymakers to consider online platforms as an extension of their gambling offerings, potentially boosting economic growth and tourism. 

Brazil: Despite traditionally having laws that generally prohibit online gambling, Brazil is witnessing a push for legalization, particularly concerning sports betting. As Latin America’s largest economy, any move made by Brazil towards legalization could hugely influence neighboring country’s positions.

Canada: Following the legalization of single-event sports betting in 2021, Canada has taken a significant step towards a more expansive online gambling market. Provinces like Ontario are leading the charge, launching a regulated online casino, sports betting, and iLottery market in August 2022. This move by Ontario serves as a strong indicator of Canada’s evolving stance on online gambling and could pave the way for further legalization efforts across other provinces.

India: Like the USA, the legal framework for gambling in India is fragmented. While states like Goa and Sikkim have legalized casino gambling, online gambling remains in a grey area, though there’s growing momentum toward regulation. With a massive population, increasing internet penetration, and a booming smartphone market, India could become a significant player in online gambling if a unified regulatory approach is adopted.

The Future of Online Gambling: Regulation Matters

For countries considering legalization, several key considerations come into play. Establishing a clear framework is essential and should involve a rigorous vetting process for operators to ensure they adhere to strict standards. Additionally, a fair tax structure should be implemented to generate revenue for the government while not stifling industry growth.

Consumer protection measures are equally important, especially in a world with readily available tools to circumvent geographical restrictions. Robust safeguards should be in place to verify the age of users and prevent underage gambling. Responsible gambling tools, such as deposit limits and self-exclusion programs, empower users to manage their online gambling activities. Finally, governments must invest in resources and programs to address potential problem gambling issues. This could involve public awareness campaigns, funding for support services, and collaboration with mental health professionals. Countries considering online gambling legalization can ensure a sustainable and positive outcome by prioritizing economic benefits and social well-being through responsible regulation.


The dual incentives of economic benefit and consumer protection drive the global trend towards the legalization of online gambling. The global market will likely expand as more countries weigh the pros and cons. Countries like New Zealand are rethinking their restrictive policies, while Asia, Africa, and the Americas are exploring opportunities to regulate and capitalize on this lucrative industry, including the potential of crypto betting sites. With more jurisdictions opening their doors, players worldwide will be offered safer environments and more choices. The next few years promise to be a period of significant change as countries adapt to the digital transformation of gambling.

About Andrew

Hey Folks! Myself Andrew Emerson I'm from Houston. I'm a blogger and writer who writes about Technology, Arts & Design, Gadgets, Movies, and Gaming etc. Hope you join me in this journey and make it a lot of fun.

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