PEZA closes its doors to online gaming firms
(The Philippine Star) - April 24, 2017 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines -  The Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) is shutting its doors to online gaming firms amid the approval given by the Office of the President to accommodate the legal ones, the agency’s top official said.

PEZA director general Charito Plaza said the agency has firmed up its position to not allow online gaming firms to operate anywhere within its accredited sites across the country.

“The OP (Office of the President) already wants to legalize online gaming. They asked PEZA for us to allow to locate BPOs (business process outsourcing companies) who are into online gaming,” Plaza said.

“After meeting with the PEZA board and the BPO association, we reached a consensus that we will not allow because first, gambling is not a mandate of PEZA. Second, allowing it might affect operations of our legitimate BPO locators,” she added.

Plaza said she would ask owners of all PEZA-accredited buildings to not allow online gaming firms to operate within their premises, particularly those “disguising as BPO.”

“I will be sending them advisories because online gaming in the guise of BPO, they should stop leasing those engage in that. Not even those engage in technical support for online gaming firms,” Plaza said.

“We do not want to ruin the image of the legitimate BPOs locating in our sites,” she added.

President Duterte last February signed an executive order further regulating the issuance of gambling licenses, including those for online operations.

Under EO 13 which was anchored on Presidential Decree 1602, Duterte reiterated the government “condemns the existence of illegal gambling activities as a widespread social menace and source of corruption.”

“No duly licensed online gambling operator, or provider of activities and services related to or in support of online gambling activities, shall directly or indirectly allow persons who are physically located outside the territorial jurisdiction of the licensing authority to place bets, or in any way participate, in the games conducted by such operator, whether through an online portal or similar means,” the EO stated.






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