124 online game permits voided

Clark Freeport, Pampanga—The  Philippine Games and Amusement Corp. has revoked the permits of 124 online e-game outlets throughout the country for violation of its existing rules and regulations.

Pagcor Chairman Andrea Domingo in a media forum Friday said the permits were revoked because the e-games, mostly bingo, had no venues.

It was learned that each e-game permit is worth only P40,000 but unscrupulous holders sell them to others for several millions of pesos.

The government earns about P8 billion to P9 billion a year from online gambling alone, Domingo said.

The past administration of Pagcor did not issue any permits to casinos but they had permitted online gaming.

Domingo said Pagcor has stopped issuing permits for online gaming in the meantime. Pagcor runs 45 casinos and different operators manage 11 others. Among online games there are 424 e-game and 302 e-bingo permits.

The government earns about P50 billion a year from casinos and online gaming, and the profits are distributed to other government agencies like Philippines Sports Commission who received P103 million in June.

Domingo stressed that starting next year, Pagcor’s contributions to other government agencies will be deposited to the Bureau of Treasury so that they will be included in the national budget for the sake of transparency and accountability.

Some government agencies like PSC are always asking for donation, she said, but when asked to submit documents on how they spend the money they always fail to do so, Domingo said.

With regards to the order of President Rodrigo Duterte to Pagcor to rid the country of online illegal gambling, Domingo said that an executive order is now being prepared to determine illegal operators, especially  those near churches, schools and other prohibited areas.

She added that a task force on illegal gambling is now being organized in cooperation with the police and law enforcement agencies of the government.

Topics: Philippine Games and Amusement Corp. , online e-game outlets , permits revoked
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