POGO income for 2018 tops target

Philippine Gaming and Amusement Corp Chair Andrea Domingo said the regulator had pulled in total income of P6.72 billion ($128.5 million) in 2018 from its offshore online gaming licensees, topping its target.

Speaking at ICE Totally Gaming in London, Domingo said PAGCOR has set a target of P5.5 billion for the year for income from Philippine Offshore Gaming Operators. The actual result exceeded its expectations by 21.8 percent. For 2017, POGOs generated P3.07 billion.

Domingo said there are currently 57 POGOs regulated by PAGCOR, which aims to monitor operations to ensure fair and trustworthy gaming; that no games are software are sourced from unauthorized providers and that players are paid and not cheated. A third-party audit platform monitors revenues, while PAGCOR imposes a regulatory fee of 2 percent of gross gaming revenues.

POGOs were established in 2016 as part of a push by President Rodrigo Duterte to stamp out illegal online gaming.

From licensed casinos, Domingo said PAGCOR received total income of P104.1 billion in 2018, nearly 74 percent higher than the prior year. “PAGCOR has licensed and allowed both local and international companies and it is one of the biggest yet highly profitable business decisions that PAGCOR has ever had,” she said, adding the regulator was now one of the top contributors to government revenue.