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PAGCOR publishes guidelines to begin re-opening process

Operators will be required to submit “Strategic Guidelines” prior to the re-opening of their venues in the region

Philippine Amusement and Gaming Regulator (PAGCOR) has set new health and safety guidelines for e-games, e-bingo and poker venues in the country in preparation for the planned re-opening next month.

 

sigma igaming PAGCOR'S Andrea Domingo to headline international summit Andrea Domingo, PACGOR Chairperson and CEO.

 

The regulator suspended all gaming operations in the country on 16 May as precautionary measures against the COVID-19 pandemic.

All PAGCOR operated and regulated casinos, including the integrated resorts, remained closed as the government is easing up restrictions in some non-essential industries with a green light to begin partially operating.

“As the lifting of temporary suspension of gaming operations as a whole or in specific areas may be announced at any moment by the Board of Directors on the basis of quarantine qualifications and recommendation, an operator is expected to prepare its gaming site/s and comply with the formulation and submission of its ‘Strategic Guidelines’,” PAGCOR stated in a message to operators last Friday.

PAGCOR further stated that should an operator consider re-opening, they would be required to submit “Strategic Guidelines” discussing the Health and Safety Standards for Resumption of Operations of Gaming Sites, and Guidelines for Gaming Site Operators to Plan, Prepare, and Respond to the Coronavirus Disease.

The required guidelines should be sent to the Gaming Licensing and Development Department at least 5 days prior to the scheduled reopening date.

Earlier this month, the regulator allowed the partial resumption of operations for online gaming operators (POGO) following a strict set of guidelines prior to re-opening. Last week, the country’s Bureau of Internal Revenue announced that not one of the registered POGOs or its service providers had fully paid their tax obligations, two weeks after the guidelines were set.

However, the POGO taskforce head of the bureau stated that POGOs are “in the process of complying with the requirements, including payments”.

Since the announcement of Enhanced Community Quarantine in the country, NOGOs (or Non-registered Offshore Gaming Operators) in the cities of Metro Manila were arrested by the Philippine authorities following leads from reports of groups gathered in hotel and condominium lobbies.

 

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