Press Release
March 29, 2011


MANILA, Philippines - On March 25, 2011, an historic agreement between the National Museum of the Philippines and the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR) was executed to provide for the endowment by PAGCOR of 178 million pesos to the Museum. To be paid between April and December this year, this finally implements the provisions of the National Museum Act of 1998 (Republic Act No. 8492) which appropriated 250 million pesos from the earnings of PAGCOR for the Museum's Endowment Fund. Though partial remittances had been made in the past, payment of the balance of 178 million pesos had not been made for many years until it was brought to the attention of the present management of PAGCOR.

Present at the signing ceremony were PAGCOR Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Cristino L. Naguiat Jr., National Museum Director and Assistant Director Jeremy Barns and Cecilio Salcedo, and Senator Edgardo J. Angara, representing the Board of Trustees of the National Museum, of which he is an ex-officio member as Chairman of the Senate Committee on Education, Arts and Culture.

At the ceremony, PAGCOR Chairman Naguiat highlighted the need to help preserve the Philippines' greatest collection of important treasures. PAGCOR is continually raising funds for the governments' socio-civic and national developmental efforts, including boosting the country's tourism industry. Senator Angara, for his part, stated that the occasion was "a huge milestone for our country. It will foster cultural and artistic literacy. The National Museum has not acquired any large collection in the last few years, and now it finally can. This is the largest amount that any government agency has given so far, and the National Museum can use every penny of it."

According to its charter, the National Museum may use interest generated from its Endowment Fund for special projects, of which the most important currently is the restoration and refurbishment of its main building, the Old Legislative Building, and the improvement of public galleries and facilities. Director Barns of the National Museum stressed that this boost to the endowment fund could not have come at a better time. "We are in the process of creating a new and improved National Museum that every Filipino can be proud of. We have been working hard to modernize, expand and upgrade our facilities for the general public as well as enhance the general appeal of the Museum. We have not had the resources that we need to make any big moves, but that has changed significantly now. We are extremely happy to forge a strong relationship with PAGCOR through this landmark agreement."

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