Philippines: Infrastructure Think Tank Calls For Money Laundering Audit Of POGOs

Philippines: Infrastructure Think Tank Calls For Money Laundering Audit Of POGOs

While the Philippines regulatory authority has announced that they would not be issuing any new license for Philippine Offshore Gaming Operations (POGOs), an infrastructure-oriented think-tank has called for detailed cybersecurity and money laundering audit of all such offshore gambling facilities in the country.

Infrawatch PH convenor Terry Ridon said: “With President Duterte standing firm on allowing POGOs to operate despite Beijing’s state-level request to ban Chinese-led gaming operations, Malacañang should now order state agencies involved in preventing cybercrime and money laundering to assess the risks posed by POGO activities.”

“State-level concerns warrant a state-level response led by government law enforcement agencies. The government cannot rely on private third-party auditors to address cyber fraud and money laundering undertaken by transnational criminal syndicates,” he added.

Recently, China asked the Philippines to ban all online gambling activities.

“We have also taken note of the Philippine government’s announcement and appreciates it. We hope the Philippines will go further and ban all online gambling,” Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Geng Shuang said in a press briefing in Beijing.

However, after the last week’s meeting with Chinese premier Xi Jinping, President Rodrigo Duterte said that they will not give in to China’s demands.

The President said that he does not want to ban the offshore online gambling business in the country. He said that banning online gambling will negatively impact the nation’s economy.

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