As an effort to raise funds to be able to support the proposed P3.35 trillion 2017 national budget, the government will be selling casinos run by the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. (Pagcor).

“Finance secretary Carlos Dominguez has told us to privatize Pagcor-owned casinos,” said Andrea Domingo, chair of the gaming agency. “We are no preparing the template for the planned privatization so we could maximize the benefits for the government.”

She admitted that selling these state-run casinos would bring only one-time revenue for the treasury as opposed to operating them, which could be billions in earnings every year. She did not disclose how much the government would earn once these casinos are sold.

File photo from PhilStar
However, she gave an idea of how much Pagcor is earning through its casinos. According to her, of the P46 billion the state firm earned in 2015, P23 billion of it came from its gaming operations while the other half is from licensees.

All possible revenue-generating measures are being eyed in order to meet the P3.35-trillion national budget next year and also to offset expected losses from the plan to reduce income tax.

The income tax rates would decrease from 32-30 percent to 25 percent, if the planned reduction pushes through. The tax cuts, however, would result to revenue losses of about P170 billion a year.

Domingez is also proposing to impose a P6-per-liter excise tax on diesel and as well as to increase a levy on gasoline from P4.35 to P10 per liter.

These proposals are feared to result in higher fares and cost of transporting consumer products such as rice and vegetables which will ultimately also result in higher prices for these products.

He is also recommending that rich senior citizens to not be exempted from the 12-percent value added tax (VAT).

According to him, Duterte’s directive for Pagcor not ot renew its contract with Roberto Ongpin—billionaire businessman—would result to a revenue loss of P10 billion a year. However, they are planning to compensate for it thorugh other gaming projects such as offshore e-games which will be strictly limited to foreigners. ASCS

Source: Philstar

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Government to sell Pagcor-run casinos Government to sell Pagcor-run casinos Reviewed by Kristian S. on 28 August Rating: 5

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