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NG eyes P14-B revenue share from Pagcor in 2015

The Department of Finance (DOF) is maintaining the expected government’s share from the revenues of state-run Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (Pagcor) next year despite increase in number of casinos.

Based on the 2015 proposed budget submitted to Congress, the government’s gaming regulator and operator is expected to remit at least P14 billion to the Bureau of Treasury next year, or unchanged compared with this year’s target.

As a government-owned and controlled corporation, Pagcor is required by Republic Act 7656 or the Dividend Law to remit at least 50 percent of its annual gross earnings to the government, through the treasury bureau.

In the first semester of this year, Pagcor remitted P9.95 billion to state coffers, slightly higher compared with P9.93 billion in the same period last year.

In June alone, the government’s share from Pagcor’s revenues amounted to P1.26 billion, higher by 9.5 percent compared with P1.15 billion the gaming operator and regulator remitted to state coffers in the same month last year.

Meanwhile, the government’s share from Pagcor revenues is expected to increase in the coming months as opening of another gambling complex in the Entertainment City later this year will boost the country’s gaming revenues.

Pagcor expects the country’s gaming revenues to increase 13 percent this year.

Earlier, Pagcor reported a drop in revenues in the first three-months of the year, but still managed to raise its contribution to nation building.

Data from Pagcor showed the government’s gaming regulator and operator incurred a P34 million decline in gross revenues in January to March this year to P10.36 billon from P10.39 billion in the same period last year.

Of the total gross income, Pagcor’s gaming revenues reached P5.7 billion in the first quarter, while other income — including license fees from the Entertainment City — amounted to P4.76 billion and P26.34 million was gained from interest income.

But Pagcor explained the slight decline in revenues was compensated by its savings from operating expenses, which dropped by 9.4 percent to P3.61 billion from P3.98 billion in the first-quarter last year.

The year-on-year decline in operating expenses resulted in a 39 percent growth in Pagcor’s net income at end-March this year to PP920 million from P659 million in the same period in 2013.

In the first-quarter of the year, Pagcor reported that its contributions to nation building reached P5.836 billion, representing more than half of the agency’s total revenues and higher by 1.4 percent year-on-year from P5.752 billion.

According to Pagcor, it remitted P3.56 billion to the treasury bureau in the first-quarter, another P622.33 million to the Office of the President, P178.84 million to the Philippine Sports Commission, and P125.53 billion in subsidies to Casino Filipino’s host cities.

Pagcor also contributed P25 million to the National Endowment for Culture and the Arts, P15 million to the Dangerous Drugs Board, P13.69 million to the national government and P9.3 million to the Board of Claims.