Duterte sets sights on illegal online gambling operations

President Rodrigo Duterte has vowed to close all online gambling operations in the Philippines, saying they have no positive effects on the economy, local media reports.

“I am ordering the closure of all online gaming. All of it. It has no use,” Duterte said while announcing the 2017 budget.

The Philippines does not benefit from online gaming outlets, he added.

He gave no further details on the ban or its scope.

According to the Inquirer, Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II said he was recently ordered to look into online gambling firms.

Malacañang is drafting the order to define the scope of his authority to investigate online gambling, Aguirre told reporters.

The closure of the firms would be based on the results of the online gambling probe.

In his speech, Duterte said his new directive was related to the recent scandal involving gambling tycoon Jack Lam, who owns the Fontana Leisure Parks and Casino in Clark, Pampanga where 1,316 undocumented Chinese workers were apprehended by Bureau of Immigration operatives in November.

However, the online gambling ban will not have any affect on PAGCOR’s POGO licensed operators, according to PAGCOR’s Andrea Domingo, quoted by Calvin Ayre.

Domingo said the government would be issuing further details on Duterte’s desire to stamp out unauthorized online gambling, and confirmed that only operators that have received PAGCOR’s blessing would be allowed to continue providing online gambling services.

More news from this jurisdiction

PhilippinesThursday, Mar 23, 2017

The Court of Appeals has rejected an attempt to stop the historic Army and Navy Club in Manila from being converted to a hotel and casino, local media reports.

Macau, PhilippinesWednesday, Mar 22, 2017

Gaming suppliers, facing the challenge of changing audience demographics and new technology, need to move to “bigger and brighter” machines to lure clients into casinos, industry experts say.

PhilippinesWednesday, Mar 22, 2017

Philippines Gaming and Amusement Corp Chair Andrea Domingo said the regulator is planning to greatly expand its program to license offshore online gaming licenses now it is comfortable it is able to properly monitor and regulate activities.

PhilippinesFriday, Mar 17, 2017

Documents alleging the corruption of senior officials of the previous Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (Pagcor) administration have been turned over to Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II.

Japan, PhilippinesMonday, Mar 13, 2017

Japan’s Universal Entertainment is disposing of treasury shares through an international offering and third-party allotment to raise funds for operations at its $2.4 billion Okada Manila resort in the Philippines.

PhilippinesMonday, Mar 13, 2017

The Philippine Court of Appeals has ordered Melco Crown Entertainment to abide by an accord to not hire the employees of rival Bloomberry Resorts and Hotels for a minimum of six months after their termination.

PhilippinesMonday, Mar 13, 2017

A lobby group has petitioned the Philippines’ Supreme Court seeking to stop the Phlippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. from issuing online licenses, arguing the permits violate the regulator’s charter and run counter to an executive order to crackdown on internet gambling.