The Philippines’ gambling industry has been in a strange position over the years. The country’s president has taken a firm anti-gambling stance, yet the Gambling Authority here has pushed for casino expansion. Despite the complications, casino revenue in the Philippines is higher now than ever before.
It’s fantastic news for gambling operators inside this country. Today, we’re going to be looking at why this industry is growing so quickly. Later on, we’ll be discussing whether or not the Philippines’ casino market could surpass the likes of Macau and Las Vegas.
The Growth of Casino Revenue in the Philippines
Legal gambling operations have taken place in the Philippines since 1976. That year, PAGCOR was established to oversee the country’s gaming industry. This government body began allowing both foreign and domestic land-based casinos to operate.
PAGCOR itself runs 13 casinos in the Philippines. Over the past few decades, it has granted a number of licenses to casino companies that pay annual tax fees to the government. In recent years, however, gambling restrictions here have gone up.
President Rodrigo Duterte has made it clear that he doesn’t want gambling in the country. Local news ABS-CBN reports that not long ago, he told PAGCOR to stop granting any new licenses to casino operators.
Back in January, analysts predicted that the Philippines’ casino industry would grow by 9% by the end of 2019. These predictions appear to be correct, according to recent reports. Even with Duterte’s tough stance on gambling, the market here continues to grow.
Casinos in the Philippines Now Compete with Macau and Las Vegas
The rise in casino gambling is taking place throughout Asia. Japan, which has implemented some of the most restrictive gambling laws in the world, recently approved plans to open four land-based casinos. Cambodia has also been investing heavily in its casino industry over the last few years.
The Philippines remains the hottest new casino destination in Asia. Casino revenue in the Philippines has been increasing every single year. The reason, most analysts claim, is the slowdown in casino gambling in Macau.
Praveen Choudhary, an analyst for Morgan Stanley Asia, claims that the Philippines’ casino industry is growing faster than “Las Vegas, Macau, and Singapore.” It’s an incredible development, as these cities are known as the world’s top gambling destinations. New reports indicate that the casino market here has grown by 40% year-over-year.
This industry here is showing no signs of slowing down. Bloomberry is planning to launch a new casino in Quezon City. With President Duterte recently claiming that his fight against gambling is over, this market is expected to grow faster than ever before.
Is the Online Casino Market Here Growing?
Unfortunately, no. The growth of land-based casino gambling here is exploding, yet lawmakers in the country have shown no willingness to open the internet gambling market. A 2012 opinion states that Filipinos can play through foreign gambling sites, yet none of these are licensed and regulated by the government.
The massive revenue earnings here could eventually change this. The Philippines’ casino revenue is now on par with some of the world’s biggest gaming destinations. The government may realize the potential to earn even more by regulating the internet gaming market.
For now, this is purely speculative. Duterte is just now beginning to soften his stance on land-based gaming operations. It may be a few years before he agrees to open up the online casino industry.
Are you surprised that casino revenue in the Philippines is growing so quickly? Will this country soon overtake Macau as the world’s biggest casino destination? Let us know what you think in the comment section below!
A longtime sports and gambling enthusiast, Kevin looks to present up-to-date and reliable information for readers. If he’s not writing, he’s probably watching MMA or playing blackjack. ...
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