Singapore –State-owned lottery operator Singapore Pools has just resumed online and telephone betting services after it was forced to shut down its operations in April due to the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.
The operator suspended all its sales (online and retail), on April 7 when the Singaporean government announced for all non-essential workplaces and schools to close. Local racing remains suspended, with the Singapore Turf Club announcing in May that it would be unlikely for them to return until as early as July.
Although online and telephone lottery sales would still be unavailable, customers can place bets on sports and racing from June 16 and 17 respectively.
Some of the sports events available for betting are the La Liga and Bundesliga in football, which resumed in May and June respectively. Horse racing from Australia and South Africa, on the other hand, will be available as well.
Although lotteries are still suspended, draws have been postponed instead of being cancelled. This means that tickets purchased prior to the suspension will remain valid. There has been no return date set for lotteries as of the moment.
The suspension was announced soon after Singapore’s Ministry of Home Affairs announced plans to review its gambling regulations and establish a new single regulatory authority for its gambling industry.
Currently, regulation of gambling in Singapore is divided between several government departments including the Casino Regulatory Authority, which regulates casino gambling; the Gambling Regulatory Unit of the MHA, which regulates remote gambling and fruit machines; and the Singapore Totalisator Board, which regulates retail pool betting.
These will be combined under the Gambling Regulatory Authority from 2021. Furthermore, there are also plans to update gambling regulations to reflect changes in technology and consumer habits.
The Singaporean government had originally planned to reopen Casinos in the country on June 9, but this has been pushed back indefinitely, which led to H2 Gambling Capital downgrading its 2020 global revenue forecast again by $5 billion in the biggest absolute fall in FY expectation for five weeks.