Philippine gambling laws were originally enacted to manage casinos and safeguard gamblers. The Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR) was founded by the government to oversee and license the business and to distribute money from these sources to other governmental agencies. Amendments have been introduced and removed throughout the years to fine-tune the Philippine gaming sector.
While the current president opposes Philippine legal internet gambling, the rules governing this sort of gaming amusement do not impose any limits. This article will go into depth about gambling regulations and how they influence Filipino players and the regional gaming business.
Is it legal to gambling in the Philippines?
Yes, when licensed and controlled, gaming is allowed in the Philippines. Then-President Ferdinand Marcos issued Decree No. 1067-a in 1975, defining legal gambling and establishing PAGCOR to license and oversee the sector. PAGCOR is a government body that was established to supervise the gaming business in order to encourage tourism and support infrastructure development. PAGCOR also owns a number of casinos; as of early 2017, they had at least 46 casinos throughout the islands.
Is it legal to gambling online in the Philippines?
Yes, there are no laws in the Philippines that prohibit citizens from engaging in internet gambling. Filipino players are granted free access to participate in Philippine legal online poker, Philippine legal online casinos, Philippine legal online horse betting, and Philippine legal online sports betting sites as long as the venues are regulated and licensed by their local regulatory agencies or gaming commissions. The only exception is that Filipino-based casinos and sportsbooks are not permitted to offer their online services to residents of the Philippines. All of the gaming regulations in place on the islands are aimed at casino owners rather than patrons.
Philippine Gambling Laws Explained
- Before 1975, when then-President Ferdinand Marcos issued the Decree No. 1067-a, there were no gambling regulations in the Philippines. This legislation established the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation and specified what constitutes lawful gaming in the Philippines (PAGCOR). The permissible types of gambling entertainment are spelled forth in this rule. Any domestic gaming that is not offered at one of the authorized locations is regarded as unlawful.
- Decree No. 1602, which established sanctions for anybody breaking the Philippines’ gaming regulations, was enacted three years later.
- In order to change several clauses of Decree (No. 1602), Republic Legislation (No. 9287) was issued. This act doubled the fine for unlawful number games. According to this new amendment, a person who is found hosting or participating in an unlawful game may get a sentence of 30 days to 20 years in jail, depending on the accusation.
- The Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR) is required to be utilized as a guideline on how to license and regulate gaming enterprises under a Presidential Decree (No. 1869) that was adopted in 1983. Additionally, it specifies any additional authorities, rules, and exclusions that apply to the government organization, as well as the corporate functions and powers of PAGCOR.
- The Cagayan Freeport economic zone for the Cagayan Valley was created by Republic Act (No. 7922). To encourage tourism in the Cagayan providence region, this law established the operating principles and established the Cagayan Economic Zone Authority (CEZA).
- The Executive Order (No. 13) was enacted into law in 2017 to bolster the effort to combat unlawful gaming. Online gambling is classified in Section 3 of this order, where it is stated that although participation in licensed offshore sites is permitted for Filipino citizens, offering online gaming to Filipino citizens by domestic companies is prohibited.
- In order to improve Republic Act No. 9160, The Anti-Money Laundering Act of 2001, Republic Act No. 10927 was passed in 2017. Big rewards and wagers are subject to stricter guidelines and limitations under RA 10927. Additionally, it requires that all casinos maintain thorough information about its patrons for a period of five years.
- The purpose of House Bill 8910 is to control online cockfighting and e-sabong across the Philippines. Additionally, it improves a number of the Games and Amusement Board’s operations.
Filipino Regulatory Organizations
- Philippine Amusement And Gaming Corporation – (PAGCOR) is a wholly owned government business that is allowed to run, approve, and license any game of chance and to raise money for government-sponsored national development initiatives.
- First Cagayan Leisure And Resort Corporation – (FCRLC) Implements its own set of rules and regulations for their economic zone, with the goal of producing a self-sufficient industry and providing jobs and revenue to the Santa Ana Metropolis.
- Philippine Racing Commission – (PHILRACOM), seeks to keep horse racing operations efficient and neutral in terms of sport and gambling, while developing the breed of Philippine horses and avoiding illicit importation of sports horses
- Games And Amusements Board – (GAB) is the body that regulates and oversees pay-per-view sports play and works to prevent the establishment of illegal bookmakers and other forms of illegal gambling based on combat sport games and entertainment games.
- Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office – (PCSO), the primary government institution in charge of organizing and regulating sweepstakes and lottery games, as well as making welfare-related health investments
Frequently Asked Questions(FAQs) About Philippine Gambling Laws
In the Philippines, what is the legal gambling age?
The legal gambling age in the Philippines is 21 for participation in domestic gambling entertainment. Residents of the Cagayan Special Economic Zone must be 18 years old to gamble.
In the Philippines, what types of gambling are legal?
Domestic offline gambling and offshore internet gambling are both legal in the Philippines.
Why Can’t I Play Online Gambling in the Philippines?
The current President wants to make all internet gambling illegal for Filipino people. He feels it is a widespread issue and hence refuses to let local casinos to provide their internet services to Filipino people.
What Is the Penalty in the Philippines for Illegal Gambling?
The punishment for unlawful gambling, according to Republic Act No. 9287, may range from 30 days to 20 years in jail, depending on the crime.
30-90 days in prison for anybody found engaging in unlawful gambling as a bettor.
6-8 years in prison for personal or staff involvement in an unlawful number game.
10 to 12 years in prison for being the organizer of an unlawful numbers game.
12-14 years of experience as a manager, maintenance, or operator
14-16 years for a banker or business owner
A protector or coddler should be between the ages of 16 and 20.
Legal Gambling in the Philippines by Region
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