Former senate president joins calls to privatise PAGCOR’s gaming operations
Franklin Drilon said the privatisation would generate PHP300bn (US$5.5bn) in annual revenue.
The Philippines.- Former senate president Franklin Drilon has joined calls for the privatisation of PAGCOR’s gaming operations to fund the Maharlika Investment Fund (MIF). He said privatisation of PAGCOR’s gaming and the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) would generate up to PHP300bn (US$5.5bn) a year that could fund the government’s proposed sovereign investment fund.
PAGCOR currently contributes 10 per cent of gross gaming revenue (GGR) to the MIF. The main contributor to the fund is the Land Bank of the Philippines (LBP), set to contribute some PHP50bn (US$917.59m).
If PAGCOR’s gaming operations are privatised, Drilon said that the government would not need to use the dividends generated by the LBP and government financial institutions such as the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP) and Land Bank of the Philippines (LBP) to fund the MIF.
In December, the Philippine finance secretary Benjamin E. Diokno said PAGCOR should be a regulator only. Carlos Dominguez previously raised the idea of privatising PAGCOR’s gaming operations during the Duterte administration but the move didn’t go ahead. The Governance Commission for GOCCs (GCG) is currently evaluating the decoupling of the functions of the regulator.