|China has launched an Olympic-themed lottery with prizes of over $714,000 covering all 28 games featured at the games.|
China's ruling Communist Party banned gambling after taking power in 1949 but State-run sports lotteries have become hugely popular since starting in the 1980s.
According to a report from the Reuters news agency, the Olympic lottery will include five types of games with tickets priced from 43 cents to $1.42. One of the games, on sale between late-April and August 7, the day before the opening ceremony, will invite wagers on how many gold, silver and bronze medals China will win at certain disciplines.
The other four games on sale during the festival of sport taking place from August 8 to 24will allow participants to bet on winners of preliminary rounds, competitions and medallists on each given day.
In January, China approved the start of regular horse racing in the central city of Wuhan with a view to introducing legalised gambling on those races next year.