Overview of Burkina Faso gambling industry

Most forms of land-based gambling are legal in Burkina Faso, under the current gambling legislation in the country. A former French colony situated in Western Africa with a population of over 19 million people the capital city Ouagadougou play host to 2.2 million residents. In contrast, the urban population stood at 73.50% of its citizens.

Burkina Faso Gambling Laws

However, the country national lottery having an exclusive right to offer most of these games including Casinos, Poker, Bingo and sports betting, the law 027/2008/AN on the regulation of games of chance in Burkina Faso is the main regulatory act of all gambling in the country. Besides this act the ordinance No.67025/PRES/MFC of May 10, 1967, as well as the ordinance No.8443/CNR/PRES of August 02, 1984. Regulating the functioning of the national lottery serves as primary legislation for the regulation of the work of the national lottery, they make legal the operation of the land-based casinos, sports betting provides as well as lottery. As there are no specific online gambling laws in Burkina Faso, it generally considered that online gambling is not regulated. The body responsible for regulating the legal gambling in the country is an office within the Ministry of Economy and Finance. The body is responsible not only for the supervising work of the companies engaged with the gambling sector but also for the granting of a license for prospective operators in the country.

Casino games in Burkina Faso

Hence interested casino operators of slot machines and casino games must obtain a license issued by the Ministry and pay a one time licensing fee 5 million CFA francs ( about USD 9000). Currently, there are approximately nine casinos and some gambling halls in Burkina Faso, mainly in the capital city from slot machines, Poker games, Roulette such as Faso Loisirs, Le Grand Calao, Lucky and Night Casino among others. Online casinos not regulated in Burkina Faso; likewise, there are no online casino sites based in the country. Burkinabe residents are free to play an international casino site.

Sports Betting in Burkina Faso

The exclusive right to operate sports betting owned by the national lottery of Burkina Faso, LONAB there are famous for their horse race betting offers. Some of the games they currently provide include Pari-Mutuel Urbain offered since 1990, and the Direct Racing Spaces offered on the market since 2007. Hence football betting players enjoy varieties of offer the Toto soccer game, present on the market since 2001. Though all opportunities for sports betting are land-based, there are no online sportsbook sites in Burkina Faso although there are, plenty of foreign sites which target players from this country.

Economy & Human Development Index (HDI)

The economic situation of a country has significant influences on the gambling industry despite the challenges of the country over the years. The country boasts a USD 14.3 billion GDP while GNI Per Capital USD 660 according to Africa Development Bank. Burkina Faso is a low-income Sahelian country with limited natural resources. Its economy largely based on agriculture, which employs close to 80% of the working population, although gold exports have increased in recent years. The country made progress in the last two decades, despite the challenges with the humanitarian crisis, the macroeconomic framework remained broadly stable in 2019.

Although real GDP growth fell slightly, it remained fairly strong at 6% compared to 6.8% in 2018. The service industry sector-led economic activity, mainly the tourism sector according to the government of Burkina Faso 433,778 tourists visitors between 2018/2019, while agriculture, mining and construction contribute to the industry. Thus Burkina Faso is rank 144th among 157 countries in the new human capital index established by the World Bank, and 40.1% of the population lives below the national poverty line.

In Conclusion:

Even though the country is still unable to strike a balance to consider regulating the online gambling sector, however, the recent Covid-19 pandemic that as upended the global economy which it has disrupted our way of lives with so many people quarantined in their homes. Organizations and leaders of African countries in the region have realized that the current situation, going digital is the way forward, so many African leaders in recent weeks are considering taking most of their economy sector online in the nearest future. Hopefully, in years to come, we might see Burkina Faso as one of the numbers of countries in Africa to legalize online gambling, as many have learned the hard way during the pandemic.

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