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Philippines Gaming Revenue reaches Record P285bn by 2023

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The Philippines generated a record P285bn (PS4bn/EUR4.7bn/$5.1bn) in 2023 gross gaming revenue (GGR), with the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (Pagcor) predicted to reach P336bn in 2024.

The GGR for 2023 is higher than pre-pandemic, and the revenue records are 11.2% more than in 2019’s previous record. The Covid-19 outbreak in the Philippines caused GGR to fall as low as P99bn.

Pagcor is confident that the Philippines will be able to reach the projected GGR of 336bn in 2024 if 2023 proves successful. The planned openings of several new integrated resorts are a major factor. Already, the existing integrated resorts contribute P207bn in revenue to the Philippines.

Pagcor’s chairman and CEO, Alejandro Tengco said, “Our results for 2023 exceeded our most optimistic forecasts, and they prove beyond doubt that Philippine gaming has recovered fully and is ready to sustain growth on a medium-to-long-term basis.

The achievements of last year are a testament to the adaptability and resilience of local gaming, which has improved Pagcor’s ability to fulfill our nation-building missions.

Philippines to surpass Singapore

The Philippines, with the fastest-growing gaming market within the Association of Southeast Asian Nations region (ASEAN), will overtake Singapore in terms of GGR very soon.

The Philippines’ gaming industry is expanding. Bloomberry will add Solaire North to Quezon City. This resort, which is a part of Metro Manila, will be followed by a resort in Cavite to the south. NuStar Cebu City will open its gaming and lodging in 2022. Two more hotels are on their way.

The Philippines, the only ASEAN nation that allows its citizens to play casino games without restrictions on entry, has seen a significant growth in this industry. Local players have played a major role in it. Korean and Japanese tourists are an additional market.

The Philippines is also the only country in Asia with a regulated market. Although the Philippines offshore gambling operator (POGO), dominates the limelight, comments from the industry indicate that online play in the Philippines is soon to expand.

ASEAN as a region is expected to be a shining star in the future. The ASEAN region has a population totaling over 660 millions and a GDP of US$3.3tn. (PS2.6tn/EUR3tn) This makes it the 5th largest economy in the world. In 2022, the bloc’s economy will also grow by 5.2%.

Daniel Cheng, a veteran of the industry, said in iGB’s recent interview: “In this decade, the ASEAN bloc is likely to surpass Japan and be smaller than the US, China, and European Union in terms of economic power.”

Pagcor’s Modernisation Programme

Tengco announced in November that Pagcor would launch a modernisation program to boost revenue.

A plan was included in the programme to introduce 3,000 new slots. A revenue sharing scheme has been agreed upon with the supplier. Tengco estimates that this will generate P18bn more in revenues over the next five year.

Pagcor plans to also modernise their table games in order to attract more players and generate revenue.

Pagcor will also launch a brand new platform online. Pagcor announced that it will enter the online gaming market in July 2023 by launching Casinofilipino.com. The site is expected to be live by Q1 2024.

Pagcor switches to regulatory role

Pagcor announced its intention to grow after it had suggested that the agency would step away from gambling operations and instead move into a strictly regulatory role.

Pagcor believes that the decision will “level the field” for all operators and help them grow in the future. Tengco said that Pagcor hoped to be a sole regulator in 2025.

Tengco also said that the shift to a strictly regulatory role may have an impact on staff. Instead of mentioning job loss, he said that plans were being put in place to prevent displacements, especially at casinos which will be privatised.

Pagcor operates eight Casino Filipino properties in the Philippines.

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