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Jun 22, 2020 / 21:18

Vietnam gov't to allow bets on international football

Locals could make a bet via a bank account, e-wallet or mobile phone bill.

People in Vietnam not only could place their bets on international football matches recognized by the International Federation of Asociation Football (FIFA), the international governing body of this sport, they would be able to do so on football matches in major European and American leagues via e-wallet or mobile phone account.

 Locals could make a bet on football matches via a bank account, e-wallet or mobile phone bill.

Before betting, people are required to have a registered account at a licensed bookmaking company and make a bet via bank account, e-wallet or mobile phone bill. 

These are notable proposals from the Ministry of Finance (MoF) for a draft decree, which will be open for public comment and would replace Decree No.06 released in 2017 governing business in the fields of betting on horse racing, greyhound racing and international football.

The expansion of the list of football matches for betting is aimed to attract more investors to participate in this betting business, as the existing legislation only allows betting on international matches or tournaments that take place once every two or four years.

This is despite the fact that investors in this field are required to have registered capital of at least VND1 trillion (US$43.13 million).

Therefore, the MoF suggested the government to include major leagues that are played throughout the year and have large number of fans, including that of England's Premier League, Spain's La Liga, Germany's Bundesliga, Italy's Serie A and France's League 1, among others, for sports betting.

In Decree No.06, locals must be over 21 years of age to be able to bet, while a wager limit is set at VND1 million (US$43.13) per day.

Currently, Vietnam only allows locals to bet on football matches recognized by the FIFA, which include the World Cup, the Confederations Cup, Copa America, Champions League, Europa League, Asian Games, Southeast Asian Games, and matches not played by  the Vietnamese national team.

Sports betting was considered illegal in Vietnam, which led to many locals to turn to international gambling websites. The Illegal betting market in Vietnam is estimated to have an annual value of US$1 - US$1.5 billion, according to local media.