A senior official of the Philippines’ Department of Finance says it would be “very feasible” for the country’s gaming regulator, the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp (Pagcor), to complete the sale of its network of state-owned casinos by 2025, according to a report by local media outlet BusinessWorld.
The Department of Finance would be ready to privatise Pagcor’s gaming operations once the latter transitions into a pure regulatory body for the sector, the report said citing remarks from the department’s undersecretary, Catherine L. Fong.
“Once Pagcor is ready, we can acquire independent appraisals to set a base price for auction,” she added.
Ms Fong also said that her department was waiting for Pagcor to “organise the transition” process, while being able to “increase cash flows” to its self-managed casinos in order to achieve “higher value sales”.
Alejandro Tengco, head of Pagcor, had announced in March a plan for the agency to sell its network of small, state-owned casinos. He said at the time that Pagcor expected to raise up to PHP80 billion (US$1.41 billion) from the sale of its Casino Filipino-branded chain of public-sector casinos.
In July, Mr Tengco said that before the process for disposal of the Casino Filipino network is launched, there would be work to “upgrade these gaming venues to add value to these properties”.
In remarks a fortnight ago, Mr Tengco mentioned that the process to end its operating functions to focus on regulatory work “should be completed by 2025”.
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