The Philippines’ gaming sector is making a triumphant comeback, reaching heights reminiscent of its pre-pandemic prosperity.
PAGCOR Chairman and CEO Alejandro Tengco has heralded this resurgence, noting significant revenue benchmarks just shy of 2019’s peak.
With lifted restrictions bolstering travel and leisure, the industry is poised for a historic upswing.
Investors and stakeholders are tuned in for a potential record-breaking year as the nation’s gaming industry capitalizes on fresh opportunities and a robust modernization program.
In a resounding affirmation of resilience, Alejandro Tengco, PAGCOR’s esteemed chairman and CEO, has announced the Philippines gambling industry is experiencing a robust return to pre-pandemic levels of operation. Over the recent weekend, Tengco spotlighted the crucial role that the easing of travel and movement restrictions has played in revitalizing leisure and entertainment sectors, setting the Philippines gaming industry on a sustained path of growth.
The pandemic’s tight grip, which once saw land-based facilities shuttered and travel to and from the country stymied, is now a chapter of the past. These lifted measures have catalyzed a remarkable rebound for the gambling sector, aligning it closely with the GGR highs of 2019—a year that saw PAGCOR report unprecedented gaming revenues.
PAGCOR’s recent disclosure of its financials for the initial nine months of 2023 underscores this positive trend. The agency registered a staggering PHP55.95 billion in revenue, predominantly driven by gaming and operations, an achievement that has fueled optimism about setting new GGR records in the current year.
Tengco optimistically projected, “Today, we expect the 2023 GGR to match, if not surpass, our 2019 record,” signaling confidence despite the slow return of traditional high rollers and junkets. Instead, domestic players and a burgeoning tourist influx have stepped in to fill the void.
In a forward-looking statement, Tengco highlighted several growth catalysts, notably the emergence of more integrated resorts in strategic locales such as the Clark Freeport Zone and Special Economic Zone. Clark, once a U.S. airbase, is rapidly transforming into a gaming and tourism epicenter with multi-faceted entertainment offerings.
The chief of PAGCOR also outlined a visionary modernization program set to escalate revenue streams, including the deployment of 3,000 new slot machines by early 2024 and the diversification of table games. In addition, the anticipation surrounding the launch of PAGCOR’s own online platform, Casinofilipino.com, hints at the agency’s strategic entry into the lucrative online gambling market.
Simultaneously, Tengco alluded to a significant strategic shift for PAGCOR, indicating a transition towards a “purely regulatory” function and the subsequent privatization of its operational assets. This pivot is designed to forge a more equitable environment conducive to growth among a wider array of industry operators.
In the current landscape, PAGCOR’s Casino Filipino brand continues to be a national staple, with eight active properties across the Philippines. However, with these sweeping changes, the Philippine gambling industry stands on the cusp of an evolution, aiming for an inclusive and progressive future.
Tags: #PhilippinesGambling #PAGCOR #AlejandroTengco #GrossGamingRevenue #COVID19Recovery #IntegratedResorts #ClarkFreeportZone #ModernizationProgram #OnlineGambling #Casinofilipino