The Quezon City authorities in the Philippines say there has been no application yet for a casino in that community, reports the Philippine Daily Inquirer.
The local city council was said to be responding to an open letter published as an advertisement in the local media on Monday from people describing themselves as ‘concerned citizens’. The letter claimed such a development would have a negative effect on the lives of young people as the planned site was near several educational institutions.
It had been announced in October 2015 that a unit of Bloomberry Resorts Corp – the group that developed and runs the Solaire Resort and Casino in Manila’s Entertainment City district – had acquired a 15,676-square-metre (168,735 sq feet) plot in Quezon City.
In June 2016, the group’s chairman, Enrique Razon, told the media on the sidelines of a Bloomberry annual general meeting that he planned to build a mass-market focused casino in Quezon City. Mr Razon told Reuters last month that construction for the scheme was expected to begin in the second half of next year.
Monday’s paid advert from people described as opponents of such a scheme noted Quezon City’s council had passed a measure called the Gambling Regulatory Ordinance of 2017.
Quezon City’s council reply stated “this proposed ordinance specifically laid down tedious requirements and conditions before these games of chance covering e-bingo, off-track betting, online sports betting, casinos, e-games, etc., will be allowed to operate in the city.”
The body noted the existing presence in the community of what they said were 66 e-Games and e-Bingo parlours using licences issued by the country’s gaming regulator, the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp, also known as Pagcor.
The Inquirer reported on Wednesday – citing Quezon City’s vice mayor, Joy Belmonte – that the ordinance had passed a second reading on October 2, but would still be the topic of a further – yet to be scheduled – hearing, where any additional issues could be raised before the measure was finally approved.
In March, Pagcor had said there would be a five-year pause on issuing further casino licences for the capital Manila, amid industry concerns of oversupply. Quezon City, an urban area to the northeast of the country’s administrative capital, is part of the Eastern Manila District. That district in turn makes up part of a larger administrative area known as Metro Manila.
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