Malaysia confirms Sports Betting License to Ascot Sports
Posted on May 14, 2010 by John Trevors for Luckyroom.com
Ascot Sports has been confirmed to be the first company that is allowed to run international sports betting services to non-Muslims in an effort of the country to reduce the amount of illegal betting and the loss of taxes. The annual budget that is spent on illegal gambling is estimated to over $6.2 billions every year where the majority of the placed bets are regarding football (soccer). Gambling is a very sensitive issue in Malaysia as the Muslims citizens as almost two thirds of the population are not allowed to gamble in any form. However, there are about 9 million non-Muslim citizens such as Chinese and Indians that had the luxury to purchase lottery tickets and bet on horse races. Any other betting activities have not till this day been permitted.
The Malaysian government hopes that Ascot Sports will return a significant amount of money back to national treasury coffins. The agreement allows the company to approach non-Muslims either on selected locations by telephone if candidate customers are ages over 21. However, the company will be able to begin operations in August missing the vital World Cup month (June 11th to July 11th). However, this move didn’t pass unnoticed by the most conservative Muslim population. The Federation of Malaysian Consumers Associations stated that the government should have found ways to stop gambling than trying to benefit from it. This will only encourage people to gamble and will cause other problems such as illegal money lending and other criminal actions even that some people might be led to suicide.
The protests took shape today at Kuala Lumpur, Capital of Malaysia, as a crowd of 300 Muslims protested against the government’s decision to partly legalize sports betting. The main subject was no other than Ascot Sports, a company linked to tycoon Vincent Tan which will receive permission to offer sports betting services to non-Muslim population allowing them to bet on soccer, basketball, motor racing, tennis and golf exclusively over telephone.
About Ascot Sports
Ascot Sports is an online gaming and betting company owned by Tan Sri Vincent San which in the past owned a number of online betting and online casino sites supporting English and Chinese and accepting a number of currencies including GBP, Singapore Dollar, Hong Kong Dollar, Euro, Baht and US Dollar. Although the site in the past was licensed in the Philippines it never accepted wagers from the Philippines and additionally never accepted wagers from the USA. Its actual license had been suspended in 2004 but had recently been announced to have been acquired by BCorp at a 70% stake in order to reactivate operations in the areas of soccer, basketball, motor racing, tennis and golf as the legal gaming revenue in Malaysia was said to reach RM1.2 billion with an estimated tax leakage of some RM4 billion annually due to unlicensed gambling which is the primary reason Ascot has returned to the surface as a key player. The new operations of the company will start off by offering products via 220 selected Sports Toto outlets in West Malaysia as well as telephone betting convenience which is strictly for non-Muslims above 21 years old.
Malaysia is located on the southeast of Asia and consists of thirteen states and three Federal Territories. They become a Unified state in 1963 and the population is estimated around 20 millions where the two thirds are Muslims. Malaysia borders with Thailand, Singapore, Indonesia and Brunei and the head of state is an elected monarch, his Excellency Yang di-Pertuan Agong. The economy of the state is based mainly on oil and on trade.
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