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In 2019, Philippine-based gambling revenue increased overall, with the noteworthy exception of locally licensed online gambling operators.

The Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR) released figures this week which show that in 2019, gaming revenue either made or overseen by PAGCOR hit PhP248.5b (US$4.92b), a 15.1% increase over 2018’s results and almost 41% higher than the market documented in 2017.

As reported by calvinayre.com, total casino revenue rose 15.4% to PhP216.4b, with PAGCOR-operated casinos increasing a slight 2.7% to PhP36.9b while PAGCOR-licensed private casino revenue boosted 18.3% to PhP179.5b. Of that latter number, PhP165.3b (+17%) was made by casinos in Manila’s Entertainment City gaming zone.

The private casinos saw solid improvements across all verticals, with non-junket revenue increasing nearly 16% to PhP74.5b, junket-fueled VIP gambling rising 18.8% to PhP51b and electronic gaming machines (EGM) boosting 21.3% to just under PhP54b.

The PAGCOR-run Filipino Casino operations reported improvements in both mass market tables (PhP12.6b, +4%) and EGMs (PhP16.5b, +11.8%) while junket-derived revenue dropped 13.4% to PhP7.8b.

The small electronic gaming sites which offer slots, bingo and sports wagering to mostly local residents throughout the country reported their revenue increasing 13.3% to PhP32.1b, most of which resulting from eBingo operations (PhP26.1b, +14.8%). At the end of 2019, there were 617 eBingo venues, 52 more than at the end of 2018, whereas the number of eGames cafés increased by 18 to 270.

Speaking of the Philippine Offshore Gaming Operators (POGO), last year PAGCOR earned PhP5.7b from licensed online operations, decreasing from PhP6.11b in 2018. All last year, the POGO sector was full of controversy, and there hasn’t been any sign of those controversies abating this year but Philippine politicians have sworn to bring the online sector under control in 2020.

Last year a total of 471 individuals’ names were included in PAGCOR’s player exclusion list, making gaming options prohibited until they can show that they’ve got control over their impulses. The total is a little boost on the 448 who could enter the list in 2018, whereas the grand total since the list was initiated in 2013 is now at 1,993.

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