BIATF Instructs PAGCOR to Terminate Boracay Casino Licenses

boracay island casinoThe state-owned PAGCOR or Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation have received a letter which is addressed to the CEO called Andrea D. Domingo. In the letter, the CEO has been instructed by the Boracay Inter-Agency Task Force or BIATF to cancel all the casino permits situated in the world-renowned Boracay islands.

The request letter was signed by Roy A. Cimatu who is the Chairman Environment Secretary of BIATF, Bernadette Fatima Rumalo Puyat who is the Tourism Secretary and Eduardo M. Ano who is the Vice Chairman of Interior OIC.

In the letter, it was made clear, based on the pronouncement of the Executive Order Number 5 Series of 2018 by President Rodrigo Roa Duterte, that BIATF have t make sure that none of the provisional licenses or gaming franchises is operational and must be cancelled at the earliest.

The Environment Secretary of BIATF said that he would be grateful for the timely cooperation and support by different casino operators to protect the most popular Boracay islands.

As per some sources, this letter addressed to the PAGCOR CEO has been signed by 3 different Cabinet Secretaries during a meeting held at Boracay on September 28, 2018. This latest decision to cancel the Boracay casino licenses will have a profound impact on all the casino operators, and the gaming revenues of the Philippines would be affected.

President Duterte has been quite firm and strict in his policy against the Boracay casino operators. In a cabinet meeting held on September 11, 2018, DOT Puyat said that some of the casinos are still operational after the closure of Boracay islands and the matter was intimated to the President.

This matter was strongly condemned by President Duterte, and he went on saying that such casinos should be barred from operating their business even when the Boracay islands are reopened for public access.

Boracay Casino Operators to be Affected

After PAGCOR decides to terminate the license, it would have a deep impact on the working of several casinos. It would lead to the premature closure of several projects including the pre-planned project of Leisure Resorts World Corporation of Rep. Albee Benitez. It is partnered with Galaxy Entertainment of Macau Casino, Hotel Sofia of Archibald and Megaworld Corporation of Andrew Tan which is situated in Savoy Hotel.

This recent letter by BIATF to terminate the Boracay casino licenses would force up the winding of several existing casinos. It includes Joey Pena’s Paradise Garden Resort Hotel, Cebu-based King family’s Crown Regency Resort and Convention Center and Alfredo Yao’s Movenpick Resort and Spa.

Edwin M. Raymundo, who is the General Manager of Paradise Garden, has submitted an application to Department of Tourism certifying that the casino resort would not operate any gambling or casino operations to comply with the directions and instructions set by BIATF and DOT.

In the meantime, Roderick Consolacion of PAGCOR OIC has written a letter to Alpha Allied Holding Limited which is the owner of Movenpick Casino to terminate its leftover gambling operations in Boracay islands. A recent investigation shows that Movenpick casino continued offering gambling activities to the player in spite of the island closure on April 26, 2018.

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