Pagcor remittance drops 4 pct in October

Posted at 12/06/2013 2:25 PM | Updated as of 12/06/2013 2:25 PM

MANILA, Philippines – The government’s share from revenues of the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (Pagcor) in October dropped by 4 percent, from P1.04 billion last year to P997 million amid the rise of privately-owned casinos in the country.

Pagcor turned over P11.07 billion to the Bureau of Treasury in January to October this year as part of its share in the gaming agency’s earnings, slightly down from the P11.11 billion remitted in the same period last year.

Pagcor, as a government-owned and controlled corporation, is required by Republic Act 7656 also known as the Dividend Law to remit at least 50 percent of its annual gross earnings to the government.

Pagcor president and chief operating officer Jorge Sarmiento earlier said the significant drop in 2013 income came after the opening of two international gaming centers, Resorts World Manila and Solaire Resort and Casino, in Pasay City.

“The country’s gaming sector is growing but our income has declined because of competition given by these casinos,” Sarmiento said.

He said Pagcor was prompted to seize operation at the Heritage Hotel Manila last July because of the stiff competition from the new casinos.

“Coming from being the monopoly in the gaming industry, we’ve been really affected. But we believe that we can still coexist with these new players,” he said.

Pagcor earlier reported that its gross revenues in January to September this year reached P30.8 billion, around 5 percent short of its P32.5 billion target for the period.

Its gross income from January to September also dropped by 1.2 percent.

Pagcor said the drop in gross income at end-September was caused by weaker winnings from table games and slot machine operations of its casinos and arcades.

The gaming agency reported a P21.22 billion in income from gaming operations in the first three quarters, 4.5 percent short from its P22.22 billion target, but higher by 0.8 percent year-on-year from P21.04 billion.