Covid Recovery as Online Casinos in the Philippines Thrive

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As of August 2020, online gambling in the Philippines is legal.  The industry had been thriving prior to the Covid-19 worldwide pandemic.

While web casino operators based in the island nation of 106.7 million must be licensed and regulated by the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR), the vast majority of accessible online casinos in the Philippines are actually based offshore, a number of which are listed at toponlinecasino.com.ph.

Those that do operate in the country tend to market extensively to Chinese gamblers.  Over 100,000 Chinese nationals work in virtual casinos in fact.

As would be expected, PAGCOR took quite a hit from the Covid-19 land-based casino shutdowns that commenced March 15.

A partial reopening of four land-based casinos in June begins the recovery process, but with these establishments only allowed to open at 50% capacity, a return to normalcy will be slow and many experts believe full recovery will not happen until after a vaccine for the virus is discovered. 

To date, the Philippines had 194,252 reported cases of the coronavirus, with 4686 new cases reported on August 24.  While there continues to be an uptick in new cases, the number of deaths has been relatively low at 13 reported on this date.

PAGCOR has been most adversely affected in terms of net gain. A 2020 tax deduction of PHP11.7m resulted inthe H1 Philippines market realizing a net loss of PHP1.60bn.  A PHP3.08bn profit was reported for H1 2019.

Covid hasn't hit the online gambling market nearly as hard.  In fact, like Zoom and UberEats, the online casino market in particular has widely benefitted from the global pandemic.  This includes the Philippines.

Easy Pay Gateway, a payment processing solution that claims to offer some one hundred payment options for online gambling, claims its clients reported a 10 percent increase in transaction volume over the last five months.

Last month the ‘Online Gambling Global Market Report 2020-30: COVID-19 Growth and Change’ report cited Covid as the main atribute to growth expectancy from $58.9bn in 2019 to $66.7bn in 2020 in the online casino industry worldwide.

- Payton O'Brien, Gambling911.com

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