The Philippine casino sector is posting yet another strong month of growth amid calls to privatize the sector and make sure that PAGCOR’s say in gambling matters diminishes. Well, the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp, posted fresh results that defy such detractors and suggestions as the revenue in the third quarter was up 7.6% on the second quarter of the year, hitting PHP49.36 billion or $860.7 million at current currency exchange rates.
Strong Results Reported Across the Board
This is a 110.4% increase when comparing year-over-year, with PAGCOR demonstrating its ability to guide the industry towards sustainability and robust growth. While the company does not break down results in too great detail, it still offers sufficient data as to why specific things have happened.
Presently, gross gaming revenue figures rose across the board, with Manila’s Entertainment City accounting for 90.7% of all reported GGR generated through the end of September. This was up 6.3% on a quarterly basis and 105.5% on annual basis. Entertainment City is private property, but PAGCOR also runs its own casinos, which also saw a jump in revenue.
PAGCOR-run casinos reached PHP4.63 billion in gross gaming revenue, which was once again an increase of 21.6% from the previous quarter. Slot GGR rose by 11.9% at PAGCOR-run casinos to PHP2.37 billion compared to a 34.2% increase in table games to PHP1.77 billion GGR.
Trouble Continues for Philippine Casinos
The results reported by PAGCOR do exclude certain verticals, such as electronic games parlors, bingo halls, and betting on cockfighting. There is a good chance that these results will only continue to improve as President Ferdinand Macros Jr dropped a mandatory mask requirement that now makes it easier for people to visit gambling venues and participate.
The gambling industry in the Philippines has been a hot-button topic, with some lawmakers and business groups calling for an end to the POGO sector, which PAGCOR has vehemently defended, arguing that should offshore operators disappear, the impact on state revenue would be significant. Naysayers have shrugged those concerns and assured that the long-term outlook would be much better without POGOs, but have based this on slim evidence.