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PAGCOR attributes rise in gaming revenue to strict enforcement of regulations

Niji Narayan

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PAGCOR attributes rise in gaming revenue to strict enforcement of regulations
Photo Source: manilatimes.net
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The Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR), the regulatory authority in the gaming and gambling industry in country, has attributed the increase in the igaming revenue for 2018 to the strict enforcement of gambling regulation.

The Philippine offshore gaming operators (POGO) have improved their revenues.

Andrea Domingo, the top official at PAGCOR, said that POGO collected PHP657 million in 2016, when they were first allowed in the country, in revenues. In 2017 the revenues rose to PHP3.924 billion and in 2018 POGO revenues almost doubled to PHP7.365 billion.

According to Domingo, this gradual rise is because of PAGCOR’s strategic moves including working with other government agencies to successfully enforce the igaming laws in the country.

In 2017, there was an executive order given by Philippine president Rodrigo Duterte which called for multiple agencies to work against illegal online gambling. The executive order also classified the roles and responsibilities of the government agencies to avoid any potential conflict.

2017 executive order also reinforces PAGCOR’s authority to regulate all games of chance including online casinos, sports betting, etc.

In their statement, PAGCOR stressed on their co-operation with the other agencies over the past two years. PAGCOR has also been involved in a controversy over an ordinance brought in by the Mayor Quezon City as it has opposed the Mayor’s move citing that Quezon City has no such authority according to the executive order from the President.

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Google Briefly Removes Paytm App for Betting Violations

Niji Narayan

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Google Briefly Removes Paytm App for Betting Violations
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Google has removed the Paytm App, one of India’s biggest digital payment apps, for several hours from its online store for breaching gambling rules, a day before the start of the Indian Premier League (IPL) cricket tournament.

Betting is illegal in India, but the countdown to the 53-day IPL has seen a profusion of online ads for fantasy sports sites, which are allowed in many parts of the country. Paytm had recently launched a fantasy cricket tournament that involved cash bets and violated the Google Play Store’s policies.

“Today afternoon, we received communication from Google that they are suspending our app because they believe this to be a violation of their Play Store policies on gambling,” the company said.

However, the app was back on the platform Friday evening after removing a “cashback” feature on “a recently-launched game on the application,” the Press Trust of India reported.

“Update: And we’re back!” Paytm tweeted.

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Maharashtra Government to Consider Legalisation of Online Betting

Niji Narayan

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Maharashtra Government to Consider Legalisation of Online Betting
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The Indian State of Maharashtra is planning to legalise online betting. The proposal has been mooted over by the ruling party NCP and it wishes to follow the footprints of Sikkim.

The state is eyeing the legalisation of online betting to generate revenue for overcoming the COVID-induced financial crisis.

An NCP cabinet member stated that the online betting and gambling market is booming in India despite the fact that it is illegal. There is no way to completely stop these activities; therefore, it would be better if the State capitalises on this industry.

“If we impose GST on the transaction, we expect to mobilise at least Rs 2500 crore from the operators,” said the cabinet minister.

A high task committee was set up by the government which studied the idea of legalising gambling.

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Petition to Withdraw Yokohama IR Bid Gains Only Less Number of Supporters

Niji Narayan

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Petition to Withdraw Yokohama IR Bid Gains Only Less Number of Supporters
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The Yokohama city has examined a petition regarding an IR bid from its residents at the City Council Building, Urban Development and Road Committee on September 11. The petition was titled “Withdrawal of Casino IR Bid Plan and Formulation of New Business Plan Independent of Casino.”

It made two demands – the withdrawal of the IR bid and implementation of a new business plan that does not include an IR and which can be implemented even in a post-COVID-19 world.

Masato Yamashita, a member of the city council (Liberal Democratic Party), said, “I do understand the sentiment of the petitioners. I hate gambling and do not gamble. There are some in the LDP as well who do not like it.”

However, he continued, “This opposition campaign from residents when nothing has been decided is only based on liking or hating gambling. I do not want to have a conversation that will divide Yokohama city.

“Regarding an IR, I would like you to try and understand more [because there may be misunderstandings among the residents].”

He asked the city to promote more understanding among its residents.

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