The following survey provides look at the state of gambling in 44 of the world’s major countries – wherever facts and figures were available.  It includes information on the legality of gambling in each country, and on the money spent on the principle gambles.

Afghanistan
All forms of gambling are illegal racket. The law is strictly enforced and anyone caught gambling is prosecuted according to Islamic laws.

Argentina
The government has practically a monopoly on all forms of gambling.  Horse racing is extremely popular in Buenos Aires, and the government operates a state lottery.  Illegal gambling activities are punishable by prison sentences of up to six months.

Australia
Betting on horse races is the most popular gambling activity, with lotteries and betting on dog races close behind.  In 1955, the equivalent of $ 65,000,000 was bet on horses and dogs through  totalizators, and a total of $ 461,000,000 was bet with licensed bookmakers (on the course ) in all states except Queensland.  (Bookmakers will also take bets on special sporting events like professional boxing matches and even sailing-skiff races, though this kind of betting is illegal.)  every town of importance has at least one racecourse, and the attendances are high: In the Melbourne area, for example, the average attendance for a race meeting is 35,000.

Lotteries are operated in all states.  In New South Wales, Queensland, and Western Australia the state governments run them; in Victoria and Tasmania the organizers operate under government licenses.  In 1955, country-wide lottery ticket sales amounted to $ 62,000,000.  Ticket prices range from the equivalent of 25 cents to $ 2, though $ 10 tickets can be bought in special lotteries (such as those held on the Melbourne Cup horse race).

Gambling legislation, expenditure, and organization vary greatly from state to state.  In New South Wales, $ 168,000,000 were bet with about 2,000,000 licensed bookmakers.  About $ 26,000,000 were spent on government lotteries.  Most gambling in this state is done through totalizators at horse, pony, and greyhound racing meetings.  But gamblers also managed to spend about $ 1,500,000 on “poker machines” (a kind of slot machine that bears card symbols).  The only illegal gambling games in New South Wales are fan-tan, another Chinese game called pack-a-p, and two-up.

In Victoria the Tattersall lottery (run to provide an additional income for hospitals and charities) draws most gambling money (in 1959, $ 17,700,000).  Under the Police Offences Act bingo  is illegal in Victoria, as are baccarat, hazard, fan-tan and two-up.

Queensland’s most distinctive lottery is called the “Golden Casket.”  It was inaugurated in 1916 and now attracts an average of about $ 3,000,000 a year.  In Southern Australia (according to a report from the Betting Control Board in 1958) $ 53,000,000 were gambled with on-course bookmakers at 446 race meetings.  At 350 meetings $ 4,000,000 were bet through totalizators.  The Royal Commission on betting in Western Australia for the same year (1958) recorded a total turnover of $ 25,000,000 for all bookmakers.

Austria
The state Gambling Monopoly now controls the state lottery, the totalizators, and the football pools, and supervises the organization of all other lotteries, casinos, and small-scale gambles.  (In 1961, 489 lottery agencies and 3949 football and horse-racing pools agencies and 3949 football and horse-racing pools agencies came under its control.) There are two state lottery drawings each week; winners receive 14 to 4800 times their original stake.  In 1961, the equivalent of approximately $ 1,300,000 was spent on the various lotteries.  From this total the government made a gross profit of approximately $ 766,000.

In the same year, 44 football pools and nine horse-racing pools were held, giving the government a profit of $ 260,000 and $ 3500 respectively.  Sweep-stakes, raffles, and bazaars are also legal, as long as the proceeds are used for charitable or social purposes.  In 1961, the total turnover from 27 small-scale lotteries was $ 1,075,000.

Austria has seven casinos, four of which are open throughout the year.  All are run under state supervision.  In 1961 the gross government revenue from taxes on casinos was $ 1,900,000.  The government uses a percentage of its income from gambling to finance amateur sports and horse breeding; most of the rest goes toward social and educational services.

Belgium
Casinos were made illegal in 1902, but the eight casinos already in existence at the time were allowed to remain-at Knocke, Blankenberghe, Ostend, Middelkerke, Spa, Chaudfontaine, Namur, and Dinant.  Anyone setting up a casino now is liable to be fined the equivalent of $ 100 or to be given a six-month prison sentence.

It is also illegal to organize a lottery without state permission: Anyone who does so may be fined up to $ 60 or imprisoned for up to three months.  Anyone gambling in twentyth century the street is liable to have the money and objects of the game confiscated.  The law affords no redress for unpaid gambling debts.

Gambling on horse races, athletic events, cockfights, and pigeon races is legal, but agents must obtain authorization from the Minister of Finance.  Every amounts to a minimum of $ 196.  In 1960, the equivalent of about $ 13,626,000 was gambled on horse races.

Bolivia
All forms of public gambling were made illegal in the mining regions in 1930, and in 1938 this law was extended to cover the rest of the Republic. The government, however, runs a successful state lottery, which is an official source of government revenue.

Brazil
Gambling on games of chance is prohibited.  Off-course betting on any sporting event other than horse racing is also forbidden.  Penalties for breaking these laws range from three months to a year’s imprisonment, accompanied by fines and even, on occasions, the confiscations of property.

Horse racing taken place on Saturday s, Sunday s, and holidays at the Gavea track in Guanabara, and on Saturday s and Sundays at the main track in Sao Paulo.  (There is also mid-week racing at three other courses in Sao Paulo.) The numbers game (known as bicho), though illegal, is a favorite form of gambling in Brazil.

There are several state-controlled lotteries whose profits go mainly to charity.  A federal lottery is held on Wednesdays and Saturdays and pays out a first prize that is the equivalent of about $ 20,000.  On certain occasions during the year (for example on Christmas Day and St. John the Baptist’s Day) prizes are much larger- often as much as $ 100,000.

Bulgaria
All forms of private gambling and betting are prohibited.  The new holiday resorts on the Black Sea, however, have gambling casinos; and the state-controlled lottery (which offers prizes of such scarce commodities as cars, apartments, and televisions sets, as well as large cash prizes) attracts wide participation.

Cambodia
There is swedish state lottery and a single casino-which is open to foreigners only.  All other forms of gambling are prohibited.

Canada
By an Act of Parliament passed in 1954 all gambling houses, casinos, clubs, betting shops, and so on were made illegal.  Violators of this law are liable to two years’ imprisonment.  Bookmaking, the organizing of pools, and private betting between more than 10 people are all forbidden.  (Exceptions to this ruling are made for pools or betting enterprises set up before 1912, or for gambling ventures incorporated after that day by special act of parliament.)  Small-scale lotteries for charitable purposes, however, are permitted.

Pari-mutuel betting on horse races through totalizators is permitted, though it must be supervised by an official of the Ministry of Agriculture.  Five per cent of the total amount of money bet on any race must be paid to the Receiver General of Canada; the organizers are allowed to keep nine per cent of the total amount, and the rest is paid out as winnings.  Any violation of the pari-mutuel gambling laws can lead to a fine of up to $ 500.

During 1960, the Federal Department of Agriculture supervised pari-mutuel betting at the tracks of 100 racing associations.  The total amount bet for the whole of Canada that year was $ 141,419,679.  Of this amount of racing associations kept $ 13,648,410, and the provincial governments collected $ 9,578,474 in taxes.  The largest single amount  taken in from betting was in 1960 at the 14-day meeting at Greenwood Racing Club (at Toronto, Ontario): The sum of $ 7,755,356 passed through the tote machines, a daily average of $ 553,954.

In March 1963, a report from the Ontario Royal Commission on crime made it clear that the law has not deterred all of Canada’s gambling enthusiasts.  Anti-gambling squads uncovered evidence of the misuse of social clubs for gambling games, of the illegal operating of pinball machines, and of imports of foreign lottery tickets.

Chile
Lotteries, casinos, and races are all popular in Chile.  A law of 1925 authorized the University of Conception to operate a lottery, and a further law (of 1930) authorized the creation of a national lottery, the proceeds of which go to public welfare.  In 1959, 1,248,000 tickets were sold in the Conception University lottery, which brought in the equivalent  of nearly $ 5,500,000.  Profits go toward the university’s operating expenses and provide grants for students.  In the same year (1959) more than 1,000,000 national lottery tickets were sold in 26 drawings, giving the government a net profit of nearly $ 1,300,000.
Public gambling was legalized at the summer resort of Vina del mar, near Santiago, in 1928 and Chile’s first casino was opened there.  Two years later, the creation of further casinos in various other fashionable resorts was authorized: Roulette, baccarat, and chemin-de-fer  are the usual games played.  In 1959 the turnover at the casino of Vina del Mar was about $ 1,430,000.

Chile has seven race tracks, the biggest at Santiago and Valparaiso.  On Sundays and popular feast days, clubs organize gambling on horse races and give all the proceeds to charity.  Betting on horse races is authorized only through on-track totalizators:  In 1959, about $ 17,000,000 were gambled in this way.  Bookmaking on horse pools, as well as private tipping or the taking of bets, is illegal.  According to the Department of Juridical Statistics, there were only two convictions under the gambling laws in 1961, and none at all in the first five months of 1962.

Czechoslovakia
Private gambling is illegal, but a state-controlled lottery exists, along with a state-sponsored pools systems that covers a great variety of sports including soccer, horse racing, and ice hockey.  The national lottery began in 1954.  There are two annual drawings for 25 prizes, and winnings are tax free.  The two existing sports pools (sazka and sportka) began in 1957 and the turnover in their first four years was the equivalent of about $ 210,000,000.  The state takes a large share of this to subsidize sports.

Denmark
Bookmaking and english gambling houses are illegal.  The state runs football pools and a lottery; the profits from these help to finance cultural and sporting activities. The only legal way of betting on horses is through on-track totalizators.  (The Copenhagen race track takes in the equivalent of about $ 1,450,000 in bets each season.)
Private dice games are often played in wine and beer restaurants, but for drinks rather than for money.  There are also a few gambling halls with slot machines and roulette wheels, but the stakes are always minimal (usually about seven cents).

Finland
All forms of privately organized gambling are forbidden.  Lotteries and football pools are allowed, and betting on horse races is legal; but all these activities are run by the government, or by government-sponsored societies.  Both the state lotteries and the football pools are extremely popular: In 1962, the income from the football pools was the equivalent of about $ 18,000,000.

Half of the proceeds is distributed to the winners; about 20 per cent is kept for administrative expenses; and of the rest, 60 per cent goes to sports organization and  40 per cent to scientific and youth organizations.  Proceeds from the state lottery are distributed in much the same way, the only difference being that profits are given to artistic rather than to scientific organizations.

As for gambling on horse races:75 percent of the proceeds is distributed as winning seven card poker , and the state takes from between eight and 17 per cent of the remainder (according to a graduated scale). The rest goes to horse-breeding societies.

France
Football pools, dice games, privately organized lotteries, and gambling on sports or athletic events are all illegal.  Bookmakers are also illegal: Gambling on horse and dog races is almost wholly on-track and pari-mutuel (through totalizators), and is controlled by the Ministry of Agriculture.  But betting at registered off-track Pari-Mutuel Urbain (P.M.U.)offices is permitted, though bets must be placed before the start of the day’s races.  Bets are then transmitted to the race track, for these offices are really extensions of the on-track totalizators.

The equivalent of $ 520,000,000 was placed in bets through the P.M.U. in 1962.  (One of the most popular kinds of bet on horses is the tierce, that involves the selection of three horses to finish first, second, ad third in specified races run on Sundays and special holidays.  The state – 60 cents 0 must be placed at a P.M.U. office before the morning of the race.  The better wins if his selected horses finish in the first three, though his winnings are much larger if the exact order is forecast.)  Altogether 300,000 people (stable boys, trainers, jockeys, saddlers, shoesmiths, and so) are employed in the horse-racing  “industry” in France.  They are paid from taxes derived from the totalizators.

Two kinds of gambling house are permitted in France:  casinos and circles.   Casinos are open to the public on proof of identity and payment of an entrance fee.  Roulette is played in most casinos, as (in the larger casinos) are boule, baccarat, and poker.   Circles are clubs open only to members (incidentally, in most cases only men can become members).  Baccarat and holdem strategy poker are the principal gambles in circles.  France has around 150 casinos and 80 cercles; 30 of the latter  are in Paris.

The only lotteries allowed in France are the Loterie Nationale (which is drawn at least once a week) and certain specially authorized charity lotteries.  These are all controlled by the Ministry of Finance.  In 1962, $ 132,295,800 were spent on tickets for the Loterie Nationale.  About 20 per cent of the sales money is kept by the Ministry of Finance: The rest is paid out in prizes.

Ghana
A national lottery, overseas sports pools, betting on horse races, sweepstakes, cards, and dice are all popular gambles (though many card games are illegal).  In June 1960, Ghana’s first casino (the Casino Africa) opened at the Ambassador Hotel in Accra, under American management.

Great Britain
Most British gamblers put their money on horse races, greyhound races, and various forms of numbers games.  The weekly football pools dominate the last category, which would also include bingo and premium bonds.  (The latter are government-issued bonds: The interest goes into a fund from which prizes or “premiums” are draw.)

Gambling activities are controlled by the 1960 Betting and Gaming Act.  Briefly, the act authorizes the issuing of permits to bookmakers and the granting of betting-office licenses at the discretion of the local authorities.  (Totalizator betting was made legal in 1928.)

The act also legalized gambling for profit in clubs, provided that the gambling is carried out as an activity of the club; that apart from any annual subscription for membership, the only other payment is a fixed sum paid and determined before gambling begins; that the club is not of a temporary nature, and that all gamblers are members or bona fide guests; that the chances in the game are equally favorable to all play and/or that the game is conducted in such a way as to be equally favorable to all players; and that no toll or cut is levied on the stakes for the benefit of the promoters.  The act mentions no game by name, so promoters must look to the general provisions to define the terms of the games organize.

Under the 1960 act, gambling machines are legal provided that no person under 18 has any access to them (this keeps the machines out of shops, restaurants, and so on); that not more than two machines are available for play in any one building; that the stake is no more than the equivalent of seven cents; and that the stakes are disposed of as winnings to a player or for purposes other than for private gain.

In 1962 betting on the horses (through totalizators and bookmakers on and off the course) amounted to the equivalent of $ 1,512,000,000; on football pools to $ 239,120,000; on greyhounds to $ 322,000,00; on bingo to $ 84,000,000; on premium bonds to $ 43,120,000.  Twelve million people fill in football coupons each week; after the 1960 act was passed, bookmakers’ betting shops opened at the rate of 100 a week.  The total turnover on all forms of legal gambling at present has been estimated at about $ 2,400,000,000 – about $ 50 a year per adult member of the population of Great Britain.

At present only money spent on football pools and bets at greyhound tracks is liable to be taxed: The revenue from the existing betting duties (33 per cent of the money staked on football pools, 11 per cent of the greyhound totalizator stakes, license fees from bookmakers on greyhound tracks) is not more than $ 112,000,000.

The 1960 act led to the opening of several casinos: The largest of these is the Metropole, at Brighton.  Chemin-de-fer is the main game played.  The only clubs to operate roulette on the continental style (i.e., with a zero) are Quents and Crockford’s in London.  (Roulette is only legal if the chances are equally favorable to all players: To comply with the law, Quents and Crockford’s give every player a chance to hold the bank.) A recent innovation at Crockford’s is cheminde-fer: In the club’s first four months of operation, the “chemmy” tables produced a gross profit of $ 494,400.

Greece
A committee of five government-appointed officials has the responsibility of supervising gambling.  This committee divides all gambling games into three categories:

Mechanical:This includes all automatic games of the amusement-arcade type, like pinball machines.  Once permission has been obtained, these games can be played for money in any café or club.

Mixed: Most card games are included in this category together with a few mechanical games.  These games can be played only in special gambling poker rooms.

Games of chance:  These are strictly forbidden, except in licensed casinos and clubs.  All these games come under the jurisdiction of the Minister of the Interior and clubs must apply to him for permission to run them.  The Minister makes his decision after consultation with a specialist committee of five.

A state-sponsored football pool has been running since December 1958.  Gambling is on football matches played on Sunday afternoons.  Of the money paid by participants, five per cent goes to the coupon sellers, 45 per cent to prizes and running costs, and 50 per cent to sporting organizations.

Greece also has a national lottery with five drawings each year.  And horse racing is a popular gamble: At Athens there are races on Wednesdays and Saturdays, and betting can be done through the totalizator or off the course with bookmakers.  Greyhound racing and private lotteries are illegal.

Haiti
There are maisons de jeux in most towns, and a large casino in Port-au-Prince.  The national lottery attracts a good deal of betting, and private lotteries flourish in many towns, with ticket sellers touting at street corners.  In these private lotteries, almost anything can become a prize – sometimes a hen, a goat, a pig, or a cow.  Cock fighting, and gambling on it, it is widely popular.

Hungary
The State Bank and the National Savings Bank run two kinds of gambling activities – football pools (toto) and a lottery (lotto).  Toto was first organized in 1947, and during the past 15 years some 500,000,000 tickets have been sold.  Lotto is even more popular: Since its introduction in 1957, more than 4,000,000 tickets have been sold every week at the equivalent of about 28 cents each.  (The state takes 50 per cent of the price of all lotto and toto tickets.)

Apartments are popular prizes: At a lotto drawing on October 7, 1960, the first prizes were two two-roomed apartments, a one-roomed apartment, a two-roomed family house, and a car.  There are also various types of lotteries using bank deposit accounts, and investors may win money or prizes instead of gaining interest on their money.  The most popular of these (gambling on savings books) allots 25 prizes per quarter per 1000 books.

Individuals are not permitted to organize gambling activities and even in the case of authorized lotteries (to serve the public interest ) money prizes may not be offered.  Card games are very popular and in some cafés cards may be played for money, subject to safeguards (i.e., betting limits) that eliminate the possibility of heavy gambling.

India

Betting on horse racing is the main gambling activity of India, and race tracks are found in all the main cities.  Card  and dice games and betting on dog races are also popular.  Gambling houses are illegal, and anyone caught running one is liable to a fine of the equivalent of $ 21, or to one month’s imprisonment.  Police can arrest (without a warrant) anyone found playing for money with cards, dice, or counters, or anyone found setting any birds or animals to fight in a public street.

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