Those from 21 years of age will be allowed to bet on horse and dog racing and international football, according to a recent government decree.
The decree issued by the Vietnamese government on Jan 24 came over three years after the country’s lawmaking National Assembly approved the issuance of regulations regarding the activity.
Prior to the piece of legislation, all forms of betting were outlawed in Vietnam and bettors could face up to three years behind bars on gambling charges.
According to the new decree, those over 21 years of age whose parents, spouse or children are not involved with the betting company are allowed to place bets on the legally organized horse and dog races as well as FIFA-approved international football matches.
Eligible matches for betting are to be listed by the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, the decree noted.
The amount someone can bet is set from a minimum of VND10,000 (US$0.45) to a maximum of VND1 million ($45) a day at one betting company.
Parents, spouses or children of bettors can formally request a betting company to ban their loved ones from placing bets, with which the company is obliged to comply according to the decree.
The bettor may file the request on their own to prevent themselves from being addicted to gambling, the decree said.
The placement of bets via the Internet or other mobile applications is not allowed, as bettors are required to place their wagers at ticket booths, which must be located outside a 500-meter radius from any nearby school or children’s park.
Illegal football betting has been widespread in Vietnam despite tough government actions against the activity.
The total turnover of the illegal football gambling market in Vietnam tops $3-4 billion a year, according to estimations by Ladbrokes, a global betting and gaming company headquartered in the UK.