Government eyes P80 billion from sale of PAGCOR casinos

Louise Maureen Simeon - The Philippine Star
Government eyes P80 billion from sale of PAGCOR casinos
Slot machines are shown in a casino in Manila.

MANILA, Philippines — State-run Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. (PAGCOR) may generate as much as P80 billion from a plan to privatize its over 40 casinos nationwide.

During the House of Representatives Committee on Appropriations hearing yesterday, PAGCOR chairman and CEO Alejandro Tengco said the gaming agency is focusing more on its regulatory role.

“We are already doing some study on privatization. The goal is to increase the value of what we will privatize,” Tengco said.

Tengco said the Department of Finance earlier estimated that P200 billion to P250 billion would be generated from the privatization, but such assumption did not take into consideration that PAGCOR does not have properties.

“We are just leasing, we really don’t have the properties. So the minimum that we are pegging is at P60 billion to P80 billion for the licences, but that would still increase with the bidding, ” Tengco said.

As things currently stand, Pagcor continues to have a conflicting role as it regulates, authorizes, and licenses games of chance, games of cards and games of numbers, particularly casino gaming in the Philippines.

At the same time, it also operates 45 casinos nationwide.

Tengco maintained that the privatization of PAGCOR would push through and would likely be completed by mid-2025 following the approval of President Marcos.

“PAGCOR should purely be a regulator. We are the only one in the world that acts as a regulator and operator,” Tengco said.

“It is inappropriate and unethical because we give licenses and yet we also operate,” he said.

Meanwhile, Tengco emphasized that PAGCOR is expected to reach 92 percent of its pre-pandemic figures this year. PAGCOR reached its record-high revenue of P81 billion in 2019.

In 2022, total revenue reached P58.96 billion and is projected to increase by 28 percent to P75.5 billion this year. This is seen rising by 6.34 percent to P80.28 billion by 2024.

In terms of its contribution to nation-building, PAGCOR is expected to transmit P50.09 billion this year, up 44 percent from last year’s P34.67 billion.

This will increase further by eight percent to P54.22 billion by 2024.

As mandated by law, PAGCOR is tasked to provide portions of its earnings to the Bureau of the Treasury, the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR), the Philippine Sports Commission, and local governments hosting PAGCOR casinos, among others.

vuukle comment


  • Latest
  • Trending
Are you sure you want to log out?

Philstar.com is one of the most vibrant, opinionated, discerning communities of readers on cyberspace. With your meaningful insights, help shape the stories that can shape the country. Sign up now!

Get Updated:

Signup for the News Round now

or sign in with