A draft order implementing a plan to sell state-owned casinos has been submitted to Malacanang and is just awaiting President Rodrigo Duterte’s signature, a Cabinet official said.
“We are working on it … we already submitted a draft EO (executive order) to the President for the process of privatizing (casinos operated by Philippine Amusement Gaming Corp.),” Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez 3rd told reporters.
Dominguez said Pagcor was consulted on the draft Palace directive, which was submitted in September.
He added that Duterte’s go-signal would lead to the creation of a special team that will handle the privatization.
“Pagcor is a special case. It’s a little more technical than what the PMO (Privatization and Management Office) can handle. So we said we will make a special privatization team, separate from PMO,” the Finance chief said.
“Maybe the process will take 60 to 90 days,” he added.
Dominguez has said that that government wanted to privatize 17 casinos out of a total of 46 by next year.
Pagcor, which is a major contributor to the government’s coffers, has said it supports the plan.
The state-owned gaming firm netted P1.31 billion in the first quarter after paying P6.47 billion to the Bureau of the Treasury and remitting P1.55 billion in taxes to the Bureau of Internal Revenue.
As a government-owned and -controlled corporation, Pacgor is required to remit at least half of its net profit to the national government pursuant to Republic Act 7656 or the GOCC Dividend Law.