President Rodrigo Duterte has said that the Philippines won’t ban iGaming operations despite China’s recent accusations that it would endanger the country’s economy.
Philippines.- China has recently targeted the Philippines and its iGaming operations and asked for a total ban. However, President Rodrigo Duterte said the country won’t ban the business as it would put the country’s economy at risk.
“We decide to benefit the interest of my country. I decide that we need it,” Duterte said this week. However, he warned iGaming operators in the Philippines about paying fees and taxes.
China-Philippines relations have been tough lately regarding gambling. That’s why China’s embassy in Manila explained any forms of gambling by its residents in Philippine casinos is illegal.
Online and phone betting in the neighbouring country has bloomed over the last few years. That’s why the Chinese government is worried about the amount of money flowing out of the country.
“A conservative estimate shows that gambling-related funds flowing illegally out of China and into the Philippines amounts to hundreds of millions of yuan every year,” said a Chinese embassy statement. “There are analysts who believe that part of the illegal gambling funds have flown into local real estate markets and other sectors in the Philippines.”
Kevin Tan, chief strategy officer for operator Megaworld Corp, assessed exposure to online casinos and residential sales to Chinese buyers. He assured they are “small and manageable” and will stay that way. “While we are the biggest lessor of office spaces in the Philippines, the [online casino] issue won’t affect both our office and residential businesses because our exposure remains small and manageable,” Tan told the Macau Daily Times.