Palace insists ‘no new casino’ in Boracay; PAGCOR permits China firm to build one

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Presidential Spokeperson Harry Roque speaks during a press briefing at the Malacanan Palace on Monday, December 11, 2017. — KJ ROSALES/PHILIPPINE STAR

By Arjay L. Balinbin, Reporter

“No new casino will rise in Boracay,” Presidential Spokesperson Herminio Harry L. Roque, Jr. said on Wednesday, April 11, despite the existing provisional license granted recently by the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR) to a Chinese gaming company.

In a press briefing in Hong Kong on Wednesday evening, Mr. Roque said the administration “welcomes all investors” but Mr. Duterte has already “addressed” the matter. “There will be no new casino in Boracay,” the spokesman stressed.

Mr. Roque admitted that he was “not aware” of the said provisional license issued to a Chinese gaming firm by PAGCOR. “I do not know how this will be resolved but as far as Boracay is concerned, he (Mr.Duterte) wants the people to benefit from [it],” he explained.

In a media statement, PAGCOR said it “recently granted a provisional license to Boracay Philippines Resort and Leisure Corporation (BPRLC) to operate a casino in Boracay.”


The agency likewise said that the Galaxy Entertainment Group (GEG) “will be in charge of the development and operation of the resort and casino project.”

PAGCOR stressed that it “abides by the laws and orders” of the country, especially being a government entity under the Office of the President.

“It ensures that its licenses comply with pertinent laws, rules, regulations and ordinances promulgated by authorities relative to the establishment and operation of casinos,” it added.