Myanmar Lottery 1.7.2020

Aungbalay (Burmese:  also spelt Aung Bar Lay, lit. "may you win") is Myanmar's official state lottery. The monthly lottery is administered by the Ministry of Finance's State Lottery Department.[1][2] Lottery tickets are printed at a printing plant in Wazi, Magwe Region, at the same location where Burmese kyat notes and passports are printed.[3][4]

The first Burmese lottery was introduced during the Konbaung Dynasty. A national state lottery was first established in 1878 during the reign of King Thibaw Min, in an attempt to raise state revenues.[5] The lottery was the brainchild of Pho Hlaing, who had played the French lottery in Paris.[5] Following ongoing issues with the administration of the lottery, including conflicts of interest, decreased revenues, condemnation against gambling by Buddhist monks, the lottery was ended in 1880.[5]

The current lottery was first introduced in 1938 under British rule, and is the only legal form of gambling in the country.[2] Revenues from lottery ticket sales generates US$28.8 million per year for the Burmese government, and over 30 million tickets are sold a month for the monthly drawing.
"THE LOTTERY will be drawn tomorrow, buy a ticket and become a winner.”

Towards the end of each month, this is a sales pitch you’re likely to hear regularly throughout Yangon and many other areas of the country. For low-income households, lottery offers the chance – albeit a slim one – to escape the poverty that is so widespread in Myanmar.

But Myanmar’s lottery, known as Aung Bar Lay, is also a big business, raising tens of millions of dollars in state revenue a year and supporting a wide network of wholesalers, distributors and retailers, each of whom takes a cut – and in the process makes the tickets more expensive for the end customer.

Although the government sells tickets to distributors for K450 and mandates a retail price of K500, it’s basically impossible to buy a ticket for this amount. Instead, the distributors who buy from the State Lottery Directorate on-sell the tickets to retailers for K550 in Yangon and K650 in rural areas. The tickets come in a packet that includes the distributor’s logo, because customers prefer tickets from well-known brands that are considered lucky or reputable.