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Which African Country Gambles the Most? You Won’t Believe the Top Contenders!

Which African Country Gambles the Most? You Won’t Believe the Top Contenders!

Gambling has been a popular pastime in Africa for many years, with millions of people participating in various forms of gambling across the continent. As the second-largest continent in the world, Africa offers a rich and diverse range of experiences, including mesmerizing nature, history, heritage, and welcoming people.

With an ever-growing middle class and increased purchasing power, the African gambling industry has become a Mecca for gambling enthusiasts, attracting various investors, including gambling operators. In this article, we will explore which countries in Africa bet the most, the most popular forms of gambling in each country.

When it comes to gambling in Africa, some countries stand out from the rest. Here are the top five African countries that gamble the most:

South Africa

South Africa is the largest gambling market in Africa, accounting for almost half of the continent’s gambling gross revenue. Sports betting is the most popular form of gambling in the country, making up almost a quarter of the industry’s GGR. Despite the National Gambling Act of 2004 prohibiting online gambling, sports, and horse race betting are allowed online and with traditional bookmakers.

South Africa dominates the African gambling scene with a staggering 80% share of the total revenue. A whopping 90% of South Africans participate in some form of gambling, contributing to an annual gambling revenue of approximately $2 billion. While the country currently has 39 operational land casinos, online gambling is also on the rise, with regulated overseas operators obtaining licenses and contributing to the country’s tax revenue.


Online gambling is allowed in Kenya, making it a popular destination for gambling enthusiasts. Sports betting is the most popular form of gambling, with around seven million Kenyans having accounts that they mostly use to bet on football. However, potential tax increases have caused some big players to leave the market, resulting in a decline in GGR. Despite the current gross gambling revenue being around $40 million per year, experts predict a rapid increase in this figure as technology continues to improve.


Ghana has the most regulated gambling sphere in Africa, with various gambling laws in place dating back to the 1960s. The National Lottery Authority is responsible for the lottery game offers, while slots are also popular in the country. Punters enjoy betting on sports, especially European football leagues, and there are no limitations on registering accounts on foreign sites. According to data, Ghana has roughly 283 online gaming websites.


Nigeria is the most populous nation in Africa, and sports betting is a massive industry in the country, with bettors contributing an astounding $2 billion per year. However, online gambling is still a contentious issue, with two regulatory bodies in conflict over who should issue licenses and collect associated fees.


Sports betting is prevalent in Uganda, with gambling being a favorite activity among many residents. In 2018, tax revenue for sports betting in Uganda was around $12 million. While there were plans to ban online gambling in 2019, it was quickly withdrawn as the industry is a significant contributor to the country’s tax revenue.

What are the popular forms of gambling in Africa?

Africa is home to a wide variety of popular forms of gambling, from traditional games like Mancala to modern activities like sports betting. Traditional African games such as Mancala or Ayo are said to be some of the oldest known forms of gambling in existence, developed centuries ago by African peoples as a way to pass time. These games are still played today, typically with stones or seeds representing pieces on a board-style game.

Sports betting is also incredibly popular in Africa, with punters wagering on results from everything from football (soccer) to rugby. This form of gambling has seen a huge growth in recent years due to improvements in technology and the internet allowing more access than ever before. Major international sportsbooks now offer their services throughout much of Africa, allowing fans to place bets on their favorite teams and players without leaving their homes.

Lotteries also remain extremely popular throughout much of Africa. Lotteries have historically been used as a form of taxation or fundraising by governments, but they have become increasingly accessible with time due to better infrastructure allowing tickets to be sold both online and offline across multiple regions. Private lottery providers have also grown in popularity recently as more people seek out ways to win big prizes without relying solely on luck.

See Also

Another growing area within the online space is Bitcoin casinos, which allow users from all around the world – including many African countries –to gamble using cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin instead of fiat currency such as US dollars or euros. These casinos offer anonymity for users who prefer not to share personal financial information while playing at a casino site.

Online gambling is becoming increasingly popular throughout Africa as well, with many major international sites now offering their services across multiple African countries. This includes everything from casino games like slots and blackjack to poker rooms with real money tables available 24/7. Many online sites even offer exclusive bonuses for African players, giving them even more incentive to play online rather than at land-based casinos or other physical locations.

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