PH Senator Sherwin Gatchalian Calls For PAGCOR Split

The Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR) has been the sole regulator for the gambling sector of the Philippines since its conception in 1977; however, they also own and operate its domestic casinos.

Recently Philippine Senator Sherwin Gatchalian called out the regulator and accused them of not doing their job correctly, as it could affect their earnings. 

Senator Gatchalian stated, “Since it is a regulator, it should be strict. On the other hand, it earns, it is not so strict.” Gatchalian told the Philippine News Agency that he thinks the government should amend PD 1067-athe decree that created PAGCOR, to separate the regulation from the operations of local casinos.

Philippine Offshore Gambling Operators

Philippine Offshore Gambling Operators or POGOs are licenses issued by PAGCOR that allow domestic casinos to operate online for other countries and not for the Philippines. 

POGOs have been under fire from many state regulators as the popular program has been linked to crimes, including human trafficking, kidnappings, and more. Despite the crime-related activity, the PH government and PAGCOR have not abolished the program as it produces an abundance of revenue for the country.

POGO licenses were first issued in 2016 to boost revenue for the country and provide additional infrastructure and disaster relief funds. On the plus side, POGO licenses have brought a new industry to the Philippines, and aside from a few bad apples, the program has brought additional jobs to the Philippines. 

Legal Philippine Online Casinos

In the Philippines, legal online casinos are available from offshore sites operating from a trusted gambling jurisdiction. PH residents are also suggested to play licensed sites that abide by current compliance regulations. 

Online casinos in the Philippines offer the same games found in a traditional casino, including blackjack, poker, craps, baccarat, and live dealer games. However, the buy-ins and bet limits are much smaller than brick-and-mortar casinos as they utilize random number generators instead of casino employees. 

History of PAGCOR

As mentioned above, the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation was first established by Presidential Decree 1067-a in 1977 as the sole regulator of the gambling industry in the Philippines. PAGCOR is 100% owned and controlled by the office of the President.

Since its conception, PAGCOR has strived to make the gambling industry in the Philippines a safe place for entertainment to attract tourism and locals alike. Today PAGCOR owns 8 Casino Filipino locations, 12 licensed casinos, and 36 gaming satellites (small casinos).