National Gambling Board

Players and operators work within regulations. For example, South African casinos have an 18-year age requirement.

The country’s gambling industry covers land-based casinos and sports betting shops. Playing in them poses no risks. However, each province oversees its jurisdiction through the gambling and racing board. 

Things change with online casinos because the National Gambling Board (NGB) prohibits them. We will review this statutory body established to enforce the National Gambling Act in South Africa. Then, you can learn the terms and conditions for gambling online.

By Adiela de Bruyn - Last modified 2024/02/08 - Estimated reading time: 7 minutes.

Table of contents

National Gambling Board
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Evolution of the South African Gambling Industry

1673 brought the first gambling regulation to South Africa. Horseracing (horserace betting) joined the industry in 1965.

Casinos followed in the 1970s, expanding the industry in South Africa. This expansion brought the 1996 National Gambling Act.

Things would remain on paper without enforcement. Hence, we have the National Gambling Board under the 1996 Gambling Act.

Today, the National Gambling Board South Africa is a respected authority in the country and abroad. The National Gambling Act makes provisions for the oversight of casino, gambling, and betting matters in South Africa.

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The National Gambling Board of South Africa

Industries and business sectors have regulatory bodies. Likewise, casinos operating in South Africa work under the National Gambling Board.

The body is not only concerned with gambling industry regulation. Its goal is to position South Africa as a credible global citizen in the gambling industry.

The National Gambling Board (NGB) follows the following vision and mission:


A highly regulated gambling industry does not appear overnight. Hence, the board implements progressive strategies to make South Africa a prime example.


The ultimate goal is to set South Africa as a global example. That can only happen through proper gambling industry regulation as per the National Gambling Act of 2004, as amended.

Achieving the board’s mission requires effective supervision and the upholding of domestic and international best practices.

We can summarize the mission of the National Gambling Board into the following:

  • Oversee provincial licensing authorities in the gambling industry
  • Research and monitor compliance with the Gambling Act.
  • Address problem gambling
  • Resist illegal gambling
  • Maintain records of gambling machines in South Africa

The Gambling Act and its regulations are available for download on the NGB website. They are crucial for operators and players to get the best from the country’s gambling industry. Download each section for complete information.

The National Gambling Board has a physical office at 1085 Francis Baard Street, Pretoria, Hatfield. It also offers email support through

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Compliance with the National Gambling Board

Adherence to rules ensures a worry-free experience. South Africa’s gambling industry continues to grow. However, growth demands supervision.

The National Gambling Board (NGB) ensures compliance in different ways. These include the following:

Through the Financial Intelligence Centre Act (FICA)

Registration at casinos must pass through the FICA verification stage. The Gambling Board collaborates with FICA to reduce money laundering and terrorism financing. It also participates in the Money Laundering Advisory Council (MLAC).

Licenses through FICA compliance are renewable. The FICA section on the board’s compliance page has more information.

Accreditation of Testing Laboratories

This section covers information on the testing of gambling machines. For online casinos, that involves digital testing of the random number generator. All games must adhere to the necessary regulations and standards.

Land-based casinos must use gaming machines certified by accredited testing laboratories. The South African National Accreditation System (SANAS) accredits testing laboratories.

Provincial Oversight

The National Gambling Board NGB reviews provincial licensing authorities to evaluate their performance. That ensures the norms and legislation work uniformly throughout the country. The provincial licensing authorities include the following:

  • Eastern Cape Gambling and Betting Board
  • Gauteng Gambling Board
  • Limpopo Gambling Board
  • Mpumalanga Gambling Board
  • Free State Gambling and Racing Board
  • North-West Gambling Board
  • Western Cape Gambling and Racing Board
  • KwaZulu-Natal Gambling and Racing Board

Research Duties

Breaking new ground is essential for the gambling industry in South Africa to grow. The National Gambling Board (NGB) regularly assesses industry performance and provides statistics. You can find this information on its official website.

The Gambling Act might be set, but the NGB realizes there’s work to be done. Hence, it researches to keep up with international standards and be a leading industry regulator.

International Relations

Casino players in South Africa cannot play at online casinos. However, many international casinos continue to draw players from the country. The National Gambling Board (NGB) continues its regulatory work by establishing platforms for international relations.

One of the prominent bodies spearheading this goal is the Gambling Regulators Africa Forum (GRAF). The forum allows members to meet and discuss gaming policies. It can also liaise with foreign bodies to advance its objectives.

Again, the GRAF continues the NGB’s goal of promoting responsible gambling and ensuring Africans benefit from gambling.

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Responsible Gambling

Online gaming should be fun. Hence, the National Gambling Board (NGB) has a section to protect players in the country.

This aspect outlines the National Responsible Gambling Programme (NRGP), a public-private service for players. Acknowledged as the most cost-effective and comprehensive programme, the NRGP provides research, education, and treatment. It has given the NGB international recognition for player protection.

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What the NGB Means for South African Players

The National Gambling Board (NGB) is here to guide and protect South African players, uphold the country’s growth goals, and regulate the industry. It provides the terms for several aspects of the industry, including compliance, research, and responsible gaming. Also, it ties into the growth vision of the industry.

Players in the country can play safely at land-based casinos without fear of biased gaming machines. The NGB keeps a national registry of all gambling machines to ensure they remain fair.

You can bet on sports or horseracing online through bookmakers licensed in the country. The Gambling Act continues its ban on playing at online casinos.

Provincial authorities regulate the gaming industry within their jurisdictions. However, you can expect oversight from the NGB.

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Gambling in South Africa occurs under strict regulation as contained in the National Gambling Act. The latter provides regulation for gambling activities and harmonizes the standards in the country’s gambling industry. That brought the National Gambling Board (NGB) as its statutory body established through the Act.

This statutory body was established to enforce the National Gambling Act regulations. All casino and sports betting operators must pass its tests before offering their services to players. Also, they must use accredited testing agencies to validate the fairness of their games.

You can expect a safe gaming atmosphere as the NGB continues to revise its terms for greater effectiveness. The body is available through telephone and email contact.

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Frequently Asked Questions About the National Gambling Board (NGB) in South Africa

How does the NGB affect players?

The NGB regulates the casino and sports betting industries in the country. It licenses operators or endorses licenses from provincial authorities, ensuring a safe and fair gaming environment for players.

Can the NGB override provincial authorities?

The NGB provides guidance and regulations to provincial authorities to ensure industry consistency. If a provincial authority's actions do not align with the governing Gambling Act, the NGB may intervene or overrule to maintain compliance.

How do I report casinos and sports betting operators?

If you have issues with a casino or sports betting operator, it's advisable to first contact their customer service for resolution. Many challenges are addressed at this level. If you feel cheated or scammed, you can also approach the NGB for assistance and further action.

Can I bet on sports and horse racing online?

Yes, you can bet on sports and horse racing online in South Africa. However, the sports betting platform must be provided by a licensed operator in the country to ensure legal and regulated gambling.

Will my winnings be taxed?

Winnings in South Africa are taxable. While the NGB has its own terms for taxation, the country's Internal Revenue Service ultimately oversees taxation matters. Future amendments to regulations may impact taxation rules.

Author: Adiela de Bruyn

Adiela de Bruyn

Adiela de Bruyn, our founder, launched this site in 2016. Since then, she's written over 100 pages filled with crucial info to enhance your gaming experience. Her goal? To provide you with the best, most reliable online casino knowledge.

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