Authorities in the Philippines have issued a ban for online gaming companies to operate in any of the accredited sites across the country, according to reports in local media.
The decision was made after the board of directors from the Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) met with members of the Business Process Outsourcing association (BPO).
The director of PEZA Charito Plaza stated, “After meeting with the PEZA board and the BPO association, we reached a consensus that we will not allow because first, gambling is not a mandate of PEZA. Second, allowing it might affect operations of our legitimate BPO locators.”
Currently there are more than 100 online gambling related businesses in Metro Manila, the majority of which operate in buildings accredited by PEZA.
Plaza said that she would request that owners of PEZA accredited buildings are not to allow online gaming firms to operate in their premises, especially those firms which are seen to be “disguising as BPOs”.
Plaza added: “Since PEZA board will not allow online gaming, they (building owners) should stop allowing the lessee to occupy the accredited buildings. She noted “We do not want to ruin the image of the legitimate BPOs locating in our sites,” PEZA have confirmed that the ban also applies to any businesses engaging in technical support for online gaming firms.
This move comes after President Duerte waring in December, where he stressed he would put an end to the rapidly developing online gaming industry in the Phillipines in 2017. The gaming industry in the Philippines has been one of the most successful in Asia up to date, attracting billions of dollars in investment.
Philippine casino mogul Enrique Razon told Bloomberg in September that Duterte’s crackdown on online gambling supports traditional casinos in the country. Razon is intending to invest around $420 million in a casino resort in the capital Manila.
Have you attended SiGMA last year? Relive the highlights from our last show and stay tuned for this year’s SiGMA. Watch out for what we’re branding as the ‘iGaming Village’ this year.