PAGCOR to sell casinos by year end

Philippines’ state-run regulator is set to sell its casinos before the end of the year, a move which will allow the firm to focus on its role as a regulator, The Inquirer reports.

According to Finance Secretary Carlos G. Dominguez III on the sidelines of the Asian Development Bank’s 50th annual meeting, the move makes sense as Pagcor-run casinos can no longer compete with private-led casinos.

“If our casinos were to replace a glass that’s broken, I think it will take ages as compared to what Okada and Solaire can do. It’s better [for the government] to move out of [casino operations],” said Dominguez.

“And secondly, of course, it will remove the conflict of interest when you are the regulator as well,” he added.

Dominguez confirmed the casinos’ licenses and facilities would be bid out before the end of the year, but says the terms of privatization is yet to be confirmed.

Pagcor operates 46 casinos nationwide.