MANILA – The Small Town Lottery (STL) posted P3.81 billion sales in two months, a 102.66 percent increase from the sales of the same months last year, Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) General Manager Alexander Balutan announced on Thursday.
“Last January, STL posted P1.87 billion sales, a 103.96 percent increase as compared with its P916.5 million sales in January 2017. While in February, STL posted P1,946,395,655, a 101.43 percent increase as compared with its P966,298,117 in February 2017,” said Balutan.
Keno similarly rose by 16.91 percent in two months from P807.2 million to P943.7 million; Instant Sweepstakes Ticket earned P611.4 million in two months, a 100 percent increase from the same months last year; while no sweepstakes draw for two months this year.
As previously reported, Lotto (6/42, 6/45, 6/49, 6/55, 6/58) and other digits (4-Digit, 6-Digit, 3-Digit, and EZ2) increased by 2.81 percent in January and February as compared with its sales in the same months last year.
All in all, Lotto, digit, Keno, STL, and Instant Sweepstakes Ticket went up by 37.32 percent.
“We are happy because the people are continuously patronizing our gaming products despite the newly imposed tax on lottery prizes. For now, we can only propose for the amendment of PCSO charter to exempt lottery winnings from 20 percent tax,” said Balutan.
If the amount of the winning is about P10,000, the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) law requires 20-percent tax on all lottery games of PCSO.
Winnings on the lottery games such as Lotto, Keno, STL, and Sweepstakes are affected by the 20-percent tax law.
“Wala na tayong magawa, batas na ‘yan. Iniisip ko nga before baka ma-dissuade ang betting public na hindi na tumaya, pero tignan n’yo naman ang sales natin. Ang katwiran ng ating mga mambabatas, windfall ‘yan. Kung nanalo ka ng P100 million ibigay mo na sa gobyerno ‘yung P20 million na tax na mapupunta din naman sa charity at serbisyong medical ng PCSO, masaya ka pa rin,” Balutan said.
From P500 million, the monthly tax collections from lottery winnings are expected to reach P1 billion due to the TRAIN law.