Several lawmakers are calling for the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR), the national gaming regulator, to be split into two entities due to a conflict of interest.
Currently, PAGCOR is the sole regulator for all gambling services in the Philippines, but the official government agency owns and operates four domestic casino locations. PAGCOR has recently been accused of not taking its regulator role seriously and, in turn, making the regulation of domestic casino services less credible.
PAGCOR’s POGO License Holders Go Rogue
PAGCOR has been issuing Philippine Offshore Gaming Operator’s (POGO) licenses for several years to generate more money for the central government, but recently they have caused more trouble than relief.
Offshore gambling operators have recently been linked to multiple crimes, including kidnapping for slave labor and other horrendous crimes. While some of the crimes associated with POGO licenses have been validated, there are likely just a few bad apples in the bunch.
After tons of backlash, PAGCOR started revoking POGO licenses and raising taxes on the license to force other smaller businesses out of the market. Once PAGCOR stopped issuing new licenses and forcing the smaller ones out, many operators decided to continue illegally without a license.
Legal Online Casinos In The Philippines
Philippine gambling laws allow offshore casinos, sports betting sites, and poker betting sites to operate legally in the Philippines. Since there are laws outlawing offshore gambling sites, Filipinos have free control to pick and choose their online casino site and can wager at will. Domestic gambling sites must obtain a license (POGO) to work online from the Philippines but cannot offer their services to Philippine residents.
Online casino sites offer several benefits to online players, including digital banking methods and lucrative welcome and reload bonuses. Digital banking rewards are also extremely popular with the online casino sites we review. Cryptocurrency bonuses are often higher than a typical welcome bonus but have rollover requirements attached to the additional funds.
What Is Next For PAGCOR?
Despite the recent criticism and calls for PAGCOR to split into two entities, the gaming regulator has yet to respond. The governing agency has acknowledged the recent complaints, but it is unknown what the future holds for the gaming regulator that has ruled the land for the past 46 years.