The Philippines gambling industry is undergoing a facelift, and as a result, a new license class is available to offshore betting operators.
In an announcement published on its website on Monday, the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR) said the regulatory body is offering “a separate offshore gaming license for Sportsbetting on Regulated wagering events.”
In other words, the Philippines is now regulating offshore bookmakers holding licenses in advanced gambling jurisdictions.
The new license class is available to offshore betting operators which “accepts and/or facilitates wagers on regulated gaming events.”
These include “horse or dog races” which provide customers with “live event audio and/or visual feeds” and are “regulated by a foreign governing body.”
Not all offshore operators can apply.
This new license is available only to operators that pay tax or have “to pay a certain percentage of their gross gaming revenue for rights to live audio and/or feeds and/or betting pool access” to governing bodies or content rights holders.
This is proved via “a letter of confirmation” and other supporting documents.
PAGCOR also requires applicants to submit a testimony which declares they understand the license may be revoked if it does not provide a contract between the governing body or rights holder within 72 hours.
All applicants who are successful at getting a license are subjected to the standard fees which PAGCOR’s Philippine Offshore Gaming Operator (POGO) licenses incur which includes $US40,000 for the application for sports betting operators and then $US150,000 for the issuance of the license if successful.
The licensed offshore sports betting operator will also have to pay 1.5 percent of their monthly gross gaming revenue to PAGCOR.
The licensing measure comes as the Philippines are in the process of overhauling its gambling industry. The country has recently joined forces with China to crackdown on illegal gambling operators with an Anti-Illegal Betting Task Force.
The formation of the Task Force complies with President Duterte’s orders to eradicate illegal gambling.
This new type of license may help the Task Force target illegal betting operators – although it has focused on local betting operators including shutting down four sites which were operating in the Philippines.
Despite the crackdown, gambling developers believe the Philippines is an ideal destination for land-based gambling, with PAGCOR recently granting a license to oil tycoon, Dennis Uy, for the construction and operation of a multi-million-dollar casino resort in Cebu.