Philippines Shows Robust 2019 Growth Despite Turbulence

Published February 26, 2020 by Lee R

Philippines Shows Robust 2019 Growth Despite Turbulence

Despite pressure from next door, the Philippines remained resilient for 2019.

The Philippines brought in some nice growth for 2019.

The Gain

The Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR) has reported a healthy 11.7% year-on-year increase in gaming revenue for 2019.

New Totals

The result brought total tax and corporate responsibility above PHP56bn for the year.

Revenues

Revenue for gaming in 2019 totaled PHP75.75bn (£1.16bn/€1.37bn/$1.50bn) in 2019. This well topped 2018's PHP67.85bn to outshine full-year projections by PHP1.33bn.

Additional Income

PAGCOR revenue totaled PHP36.27bn in additional income comprised predominantly of the sale of APGCOR lands in Entertainment City to Bloomberry Resorts Subsidiary Sureste Properties Inc.

Accounting for Supplements

Even with the additional revenue PAGCOR pointed out that revenue was up 11.2% year-on-year anyway.

Major Contributors

The major collections of revenue in 2019 came from slot machines, electronic bingo and table games operations, on top of regulatory fees from offshore gaming sites and fees from licensed casinos.

Department Contributions

These totals generated PHP35.92bn for the National Treasury, and PHP3.78bn generated in licensee franchise taxes at 5%.

An additional total of PHP1.79bn was paid to governing body for sports Philippine Sports Commission; with the body responsible for dealing with illegal drugs Dangerous Drugs Board receiving PHP60m. Another PHP 118.9 was passed to The Board of Claims, a Department of Justice agency providing compensation to victims of unjust imprisonment and violent crimes.

Social Re-investment

Athletes and coaches competing in international sports events were also beneficiaries of iGaming proceeds, receiving PHP 123.3m in cash incentives from PAGCOR. Meanwhile cities hosting PAGCOR operated casinos received PHP445.7m.

China Wall

The year 2019 was further distinguished by the Philippines resistance to heavy pressure from neighbouring China to cease all iGaming activity, which ended with PAGCOR's August halting on the issuing of new Philippines Offshore Gaming Operator (POGO) licences in August 2019.

Continuing to Operate

The standoff appears to cease there, with President Rodrigo Duterte calling POGO an important source of jobs and tax for the country.

Managing the Environment for Stability

However, more conflict may be brewing with China continuing to crack down on iGaming in 2020, with a January warning that China would continue cracking down on countries from which operators are targeting players in China, so PAGCOR will have to be vigilant about curtailing the attempts of Philippines operators to serve China in order to maintain amicable relations on that front.

See also

PAGCOR Collects Licensing Fees, but the Philippines Cannot Play

Gambling Key to Philippines Economy

Philippine Prez Turns Down Slot Plan

Duterte Cracks Down on Illegal Gambling in the Philippines

New Philippines President Duerte Sets Sights on Online Gambling


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