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PAGCOR Suspends Resorts World Manila Licence
- June 12, 2017 By Oliver Young -
A lot of things have happened in the Philippine casino industry in the past few years. There have been serious worries after gambling opponent Rodrigo Duterte became the country’s President. Duterte pledged to stop online gambling and that raised the concerns that the whole casino industry is in danger. Fortunately, Duterte took a step back and allowed the country’s regulatory bodies to reissue online gambling licences to multiple operators.
Several of the laws and regulations regarding casinos and casino gambling, both on and offline, in the Philippines have been amended after Duterte rose to power. Government officials are strictly prohibited from visiting casinos and there and citizens who are caught gambling at unlicensed online casinos also face penalties. Fortunately, the online casino industry is pretty safe and online operators registered in the Philippines are allowed to offer gambling services to people outside the Philippines. This right is guaranteed by the order signed by the President earlier this year.
The Company Is Accused of Protocol Breach
There has been quite a lot of stirrups in the land-based gambling industry. The latest unfortunate incident that happened at one of Manila’s largest casino resorts – Resorts World Manila (RWM), where 38 people were killed in a gun shooting rampage, prompted action from PAGCOR, the country’s leading regulatory body.
PAGCOR ordered the management of RWM to halt its operations. The PAGCOR boss, Andrea Domingo said that there will be an additional investigation into the incident and that the company will be under scrutiny for its inability to prevent such a horrible incident. Travellers International Hotel Group, the company behind RWM has been accused of breaching security protocols. The order to stop all gaming operations will be active as long as the company is under investigation.
PAGCOR released a press statement in which it is noted that the provisional licence is suspended and the company will not be able to operate casinos or any other gaming facilities during the period while the suspension is valid. Even before PAGCOR issued its statement, a representative of the casino said that their facility will remain closed in order to enable the authorities to investigate the incident.
Possible Introduction of Casino Entry Fees
PAGCOR has also ordered all other casino operators in the country to obey the security standards set in the laws and regulatory guidelines, so that such a horrible incident wouldn’t happen again. PAGCOR has an obligation to protect the interests of all casino operators, but also of all casino visitors, as well as other parties that have an interest in the casino industry.
It seems that things may not end with PAGCOR’s suspension of RWM, as there have been reports that certain Philippine lawmakers are looking to introduce further restrictions on casino gambling. One lawmaker has to be said that the effects of problem gambling has to be taken into consideration, hinting that the person who carried out the attack was a problem gambler.
The proposed amendments will include a proposal to introduce entry fees for all casino visitors in an attempt to prevent people who are considered to be prone to problem gambling from entering. Experts have raised concerns regarding the effectiveness of such a solution.