Government Gaming Corporation to Sue 33 Noncompliant Offshore Gaming Operators

August 18, 2023 | illegal gambling

MANILA, Philippines (August 17, 2023) — According to local media reports the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. (Pagcor) said on Thursday, Aug. 17, that offshore gaming operators, irrespective of their departure from the country, remain fully liable for settling their outstanding fees.

Alejandro Tengco, Pagcor chairman and chief executive officer said the agency is pursuing legal measures against 33 offshore gaming licensees, including those who have relocated from the country, for the non-payment of fees amounting to P2.02 billion.

Pagcor records showed that the operators, who were given licenses during the previous administration, have not paid their license fees for over a year now in violation of the Offshore Gaming Regulatory Manual.

Tengco said despite appeals by the current management, the 33 offshore gaming operators have not remitted regulatory fees due to Pagcor.

“Because of this situation, we are duty-bound to take a legal course of action. We are now in the process of gathering pertinent information to file appropriate cases against them,” Tengco said in a statement.

Of the 33 erring offshore gaming operators, two were billed as of May 2023 while two others were endorsed to Pagcor’s Legal Group since February 2023.

Also, while five of the operators already closed shop, Tengco warned that their refusal to abide by Philippine laws and to pay the government what is due shall be dealt with legally.

“Pagcor will continue to ensure that all our regulated gaming entities – including offshore gaming operators and service providers – will abide by our regulatory policies, including proper payment of fees and taxes,” he said.

During a congressional hearing early this week, the Pagcor chief said some offshore gaming operators who were granted licenses during the previous administration closed shop during the pandemic, leaving behind billions of pesos in unpaid dues.

SOURCE: Manila Bulletin.

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