Zambia is turning to hot-spot for iGaming Sector in Africa

iGaming in Africa is fast becoming a vast and lucrative market; Zambia is among the countries leading the iGaming gambling and betting trends in the continent. The iGaming sector has been experiencing sustainable growth in recent years.

The acceptance of iGaming betting and gambling has received a wide popularization from the country’s population thanks to the competitive smartphone market in the country, has made it affordable for end-users and internet accessibility particularly amid the covid-19 related lockdown to curb the spread of the virus the Africa iGaming sector, and bookmakers were experiencing a surge in iGaming betting as players go digital, the paradigm shift in customers behavior to bet online is gaining momentum in the region and the Zambians are not left out in this trend.

Also, the market success in recent years has been further attributed to the reforms the Zambian regulatory board has put in places, such as the time process and procedures to acquire a gaming license is easy and straight forward for the interested individual or company as well as reducing the tax on gambling for operators has made the Zambian market the hot-spot for investors that success has been evident that have seen over 40 plus gaming license issued over the year. The government initiative is to leverage on the gaming and betting sector to support the government and make the sector a source of economic growth to boost job creation. At the same time, it is also a source of tourist attractions, which Zambian is known for its wildlife experience and nature at its peak, making it one of the go-to-places in Africa for tourists. As mentioned above, the unprecedented growth of the iGaming sector can not be possible without the expansion in digital connectivity thanks to tech infrastructural development the government has to embark on in recent years to meet the demands of an increasingly mobile-friendly generation. That is too simplistic.

The other catalyst driver of the Zambia industry increased internet penetration, which has been evident in most of Africa. The mass adoption of smartphones, coupled with the advent of Fintech penetration (the integration of mobile money service), has been prominent in the contribution to the acceptance of iGaming betting and gambling growth in the country. In 2019 Zambia-specific report on the ranking of websites by the number of visitors d total page views compiled by Alexa, an independent body researcher, which measures how website rank in the country relatives to other sites, featured two online gambling platforms among the top 20 websites as the most visited website in the country, this information relates to people that access gambling and betting services through web browsers, it excludes mobile app users.

Correspondingly, the cost of buying data services has been reduced markedly since 2017, when the number of Zambians using a mobile browser plunge to jus 5.2 million by the year ending of 2018 by 2019 ending report by Global Digital yearbook shows that Zambia mobile internet user increase to a total of 6.92 million active mobile internet users, translating to 39 percent of the country’s 17.87 million total population, other statistics from the 2018 National Survey and usage of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) by household and individuals in Zambia estimate that the proportion of individuals that own a smartphone as a share of all the people that owned a mobile phone subscribed to local network increased from 13.5 percent to 29.6 percent between 2015 and 2018. The testament to the technology enablement, such as an increase in internet penetration and ownership and smartphone usage, makes gambling and betting more accessible than ever before.

 

Every smartphone serves as the new norm for gambling enthusiasts in Zambia. All has been possible thanks to the Fintech ecosystem that is altering the world of business, as we know today. The gambling industry is generally among the latest to adapt to this ground-breaking technology. The collaboration between mobile money services and various betting platforms to facilitate for cashless payment, securely and efficiently as been the key to iGaming gambling and betting in Zambia, even though Gambling in Zambia is currently regulated by three main pieces of legislation the State Lotteries Act, the Casino Act and the Betting Act, the State Lotteries Act was enacted to control and allow lottery games and pools, the Casino Act was enacted to regulate procedures for licensing casino operators within the Zambian borders and the Betting Act established a Betting Board that regulates betting operators while as mentioned previously regarding the gambling tax the government in 2019

National Budget saw the abolishment of the 20 percent casino levy previously charge on casinos, lotteries, betting and gaming saw the introduction of a new tax regime of casino live games 20 percent of gross taking, Casino machine games, 35 percent of gross takings, lottery winnings 35 percent of net proceeds, Betting 10 percent of gross takings. Hence the Zambia iGaming gambling and betting industry in Zambia has become increasingly popular, and enthusiastic customers are full-time players. It appears gambling is harmless fun for the majority of people.

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