February 23, 2018

a speech before new recruits of the ruling Partido Demokratikong Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban) party in Bataan province on Thursday. PH stocks s...

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February 23, 2018

Infrastructure investment in the Philippines set to drive growth THE PHILIPPINES has kicked off its 2018 infrastructure program with the launch of a headline transport project, with additional investments set to support GDP growth moving forward. Subway expected to reduce economic cost of traffic — JICA (Can also be read in Philippine Daily Inquirer, Business Mirror, The Standard, Malaya) CONSTRUCTION of the Philippines‘ first subway line is expected to start later this year, with authorities hoping to alleviate Manila‘s road congestion, which is estimated by Japan‘s aid agency to cost the economy P3.5 billion daily. Approved foreign investment pledges lowest in more than a decade — PSA (Can also be read in Manila Bulletin, Philippine Star, Philippine Daily Inquirer, Manila Times, Malaya) APPROVED foreign investment commitments fell to their worst level in 12 years, according to data the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) released on Thursday. Peso ends flat on FOMC meeting minutes THE PESO closed flat against the dollar on Thursday following the release of hawkish minutes of the January meeting of the US Federal Reserve. Risk remains despite limited current account gap growth (Can also be read in Business Mirror) THE PHILIPPINES is unlikely to see a ―significant widening‖ of its current account deficit, even as a bigger gap exposes the country more to ―sudden capital outflows,‖ S&P Global Ratings said in a regional note on Thursday. DoE monitoring power deal renewals to ensure CSP rules are met THE Department of Energy (DoE) said it will intervene and review existing power supply contracts with an automatic renewal clause to block any move to circumvent the rules on competitive selection process (CSP). Consumer price index base year changing to 2012 in March

THE Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) said the base year for the consumer price index (CPI) will change to 2012 beginning in March. Perception of PHL corruption worsens THE PHILIPPINES dropped 10 spots globally and languished in the lower third of the Asia-Pacific list in an annual report of businessmen‘s corruption perception that tagged the country ―among the worst‖ in terms of dealing with those who ―dare to challenge the status quo.‖ Sustainable business: transcending CSR theaters FINEX Folio by Benel D. Lagua Recent developments across the globe have tested companies in a number of ways. Corporate citizenship, philanthropy and social innovation have been swiftly thrust into the limelight and are no longer regarded as mere buzzwords.

Duterte tells rebels: Joma making you fight futile cause For a brief candid moment, President Duterte offered to turn over the reins of national government to a group of former rebels during a recent meeting in Malacañang. Don't play ISIS card, MILF told Iligan City Rep. Frederick Siao on Thursday asked Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) Chairman Al-Hajj Ebrahim Murad ―not to play the ISIS card‖ as the House of Representatives endeavors to pass the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL).

Two-phased hike seen in policy rates this year The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas(BSP) is expected to increase its interest rates by a total of 50 basis points this year due to inflationary pressures, an economist said. Seeing revenue shortfall from TRAIN, NEDA rethinks infra financing The country‘s socioeconomic planning chief on Wednesday said policymakers should ―rethink‖ what financing scheme must be implemented to fund the Duterte administration‘s aggressive infrastructure push. Senate ratifies bill further cutting red tape The Senate has ratified a bill which seeks to further cut red tape in government in line with efforts to further boost investments and reduce corruption. Not only to Kuwait, Duterte may expand OFW deployment ban President Rodrigo Duterte said that a ban on the deployment of workers to Kuwait, where a Filipina was found dead in a freezer, will continue and could be expanded to

other countries where Filipino workers suffer "human degradation."

BIR issues rules on new personal income tax rates The Bureau of Internal Revenue has released the implementing rules and regulations of the new personal income tax rates under the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) Act. No retail armadeggon in PH in next 10 years The feared demise of traditional retailing, which seems to be starting in the United States, Europe and China as a result of booming online shopping, may not happen in the Philippines in the next five to 10 years, but it is a future possibility that SM Investments Corp. (SMIC) is preparing for, the chair of the country‘s largest conglomerate said. Now Telecom gets franchise extension until 2043 Now Telecom Co. Inc. secured an extension of its congressional franchise to build and operate a telecommunications network until 2043. Alvarez pushes federalism Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez jokingly referred to President Duterte as ―gago‖ (idiot) in a speech before new recruits of the ruling Partido Demokratikong Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban) party in Bataan province on Thursday. PH stocks seen to resume upswing, hit 9,100 in ‘18 The Philippine Stock Exchange index will likely resume its upswing and reach a new high of 9,100 within this year as the country‘s macroeconomic fundamentals remained favorable, the chief strategist of BDO Unibank said. PH stocks slip to 8,500 (Can also be read in Manila Times, Malaya) The local stock barometer slipped to the 8,500 mark on Thursday as investors continued to price in the impact of rising inflation and interest rates in the country. LPA coming, but it‘ll be hot A low pressure area (LPA) was expected to enter the Philippine area of responsibility on Friday afternoon, the state weather bureau said.

Neda chief says FTAs to boost PHL-US trade, investment ties The country‘s chief economist sees the need for the Philippines to explore more freetrade agreements (FTAs) with the United States to boost trade and investment ties between the two countries.

P398-million DA-PRDP fund to boost Mindanao priority commodities Davao City—The Department of Agriculture‘s Philippine Rural Development Project (DA-PRDP) boosts Mindanao‘s champion commodities by front-loading funds for enterprise development. Slot for third telco player open until end of March NEW Washington, Aklan—With only a left before the deadline, the Department of Information and Communications and Technology (DICT) announced it is still accepting companies aspiring to be the third telco player in the country. Solon: Twin Senate bills assure EODB, price freeze Early enactment of the Senate-ratified final version of the Ease of Doing Business (EODB) and Efficient Government Service Delivery Act is seen to effectively cut red tape and spare businesses from spending billions of pesos and millions of manhours yearly to comply with government licensing procedures, according to Senate President Pro Tempore Ralph G. Recto. Bar private traders from importing rice–solon A lawmaker on Thursday called on the National Food Authority Council (NFAC) to disallow private traders from importing rice and to set a ceiling on the retail price of the staple. Boracay business owners oppose ‗state of calamity‘ BUSINESS owners, resort owners and sporting associations on Boracay Island on Thursday expressed alarm over the proposal of the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) for President Duterte to declare the island under a ―state of calamity.‖ DOLE orders PRAs to keep close watch on OFWs in Kuwait The Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) has instructed all Philippine recruitment agencies (PRAs) to closely monitor the condition of overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) they have sent to Kuwait or face possible sanctions. Average retail price of dressed chicken declines slightly The average retail price of dressed chicken as of February 21 declined by 2.24 percent to P145.42 per kilogram (kg), from the previous week‘s quotation of P148.75 per kg, according to the Bureau of Animal Industry (BAI). Faith, farm, sports and storm tourism, anyone? By Zoilo ‗Bingo‘ Dejaresco III Tourism Secretary Wanda Corazon T. Tulfo-Teo reads the future correctly that the fate of tourism anywhere lies in addressing sector-specific wants.

Anti-trust body approves joint ventures (Can also be read in Daily Tribune)

THE Philippine Competition Commission (PCC) approved on Thursday two new joint ventures in property development and energy investment. Bangladesh adopts PH solar farm products dryer Bangladesh will adopt the multi-commodity solar tunnel dryer (MCSTD) that was modified for use in the Philippines, demonstrating the feasibility of the technology that has been adopted by both farmers and agribusiness companies. ‗School on air‘ targets 10,000 farmer-enrolees THE Department of Agriculture (DA)-Cagayan Valley office is aiming to enrol at least 10,000 farmers from the region for its School on Air (SOA) program on ―Climate Smart Agriculture cum Rice Production.‖ ‗Business as usual‘ for Boracay Boracay tourism has not suffered despite warnings of polluted waters and the closure of 51 establishments due to environmental violations, a Tourism department official claimed. ERC lowers system loss cap The Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) has reduced system loss charges that distribution utilities (DUs) can pass on to their consumers. Fed officials say tax cuts could juice US economy (Can also be read in Manila Bulletin) WASHINGTON: US central bankers said the recent tax cuts could juice the economy more than expected in the near term, meaning further interest rate hikes likely will be needed, according to meeting minutes released Wednesday. US dollar for financials, peso for compensation DUE DILIGENCER by Emeterio Sd. Perez Gerard Anton S. Ramos, a member of the 11-person board of Atlas Consolidated Mining and Development Corp. (ACMDC), used to indirectly own 5.22 million ACMDC common shares that were lodged with PCD Nominee Corp. He reduced the number of Atlas common shares he held to 5.149 million, after selling 71,000 common shares at different prices in five trades. Decision-making in the age of AI By REYNALDO LUGTU, JR. A recent article in Harvard Business Review titled, ―As AI Makes More Decisions, the Nature of Leadership Will Change,‖ has sparked vigorous debates and discussions in the business and academic community alike. The article begins with, ―It is tempting to regard artificial intelligence as a threat to human leadership. After all, the very purpose of AI is to augment, improve and ultimately replace human intelligence, which is still widely regarded, at least by us humans, as our key competitive advantage.‖ Rice importation need not be controversial

By DR. WILLIAM DAR The National Food Authority (NFA) planning to import 250,000 metric tons (MT) of rice has made news again, and Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol and Socioeconomic Planning Assistant Secretary Mercedita Sombilla have stated their opposition on the issue the past weeks.

Market sinks; PXP, Ayala decline The stock market sank along with most of Asia, fueling fears of fresh volatility after Federal Reserve minutes fanned expectations US interest rates would rise further.

DOTr: It could be an understatement The Department of Transportation (DOTr) yesterday agreed that traffic in Metro Manila has indeed worsened and believes the JICA report that productivity loses due to traffic mat reach P3.5 billion a day may be an ―understatement.‖ Car manufacturer, power distribution firm put up EV charging station Mitsubishi Motors Corp. (MMC), Mitsubishi Motors Philippines Corp. (MMPC) and Manila Electric Co. (Meralco) have put up an electric vehicle (EV) quick charging station at the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Central Office in Quezon City in preparation for the expected demand for such facility.

PBGEA hopeful Aus market to open soon THE banana industry of the country continues to aspire for expansion as there is currently a looming possibility of banana export market to Australia, said Pilipino Banana Growers and Exporters Association (PBGEA) official. Innovation hub to rise in Magsaysay Avenue A P10-MILLION worth of budget was approved for the establishment of an Innovation Hub along R. Magsaysay Avenue, Davao City intended for the promotion and investment connections of tech start-ups. Over 30,000 MSME served in Cebu City

FOR assisting more than 30,000 micro and small enterprises in 2017, the Cebu City Negosyo Center earned the top spot in the Department of Trade and Industry‘s Top 50 Negosyo Centers list in the Philippines. Drivers, operators urged to invest in new jeepneys CEBU City Mayor Tomas Osmeña encouraged drivers and transportation operators to invest in the new type of public utility jeepneys. CCCI, DOST sponsor training on industrial calibration, HACCP TO leverage the capabalities not just of its members but also the business community in Cebu, CCCI will hold a training on industrial calibration on March 7 to 9 at the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) 7 Office, in Sudlon, Lahug. PSA: Palay production in NegOcc up 4.9% THE Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) in Negros Occidental reported an increase of 4.9 percent in the province‘s palay production last year. DOT official: Tourism can save NegOcc economy THE top official of the Department of Tourism (DOT) in Western Visayas said tourism can save the economy of Negros Occidental, if the slump in the sugar industry continues. Speak out: Database on organic agriculture in Benguet REPUBLIC Act 10068, known as the Organic Agriculture Act (OAA) of 2010, was signed into law in 2010. It is an act providing for the development and promotion of organic agriculture (OA) in the Philippines and for other purposes.

TI, AI reports fuel anti-Rody views A day after a United States intelligence community global assessment that mentioned that President Duterte being a threat to democracy and human rights, two reports from rights advocates, Transparency International (TI) and Amnesty International (AI), were drummed up yesterday as being detrimental to President Duterte. Lawmakers conflict on NFA importation Two lawmakers, one from Northern Luzon and the other from Bicol, yesterday expressed conflicting views on how to solve the looming rice shortage that could befell the country. For Camarines Sur Rep. LRay Villafuerte, the NFA Council should the stop of policy of letting traders import rice and allow them to dictate prices. Leading RP start-up taps trade icon to lead board In its bid to be led by an industry icon and instill good corporate governance in the company, the board of directors of Acudeen Technologies, Inc., led by its founding

chairman Mario Jordan ―Magellan‖ Fetalino III, has installed former 8990 Holdings president and CEO Januario Jesus ―JJ‖ Atencio as their new chairman. DBM: Budget main tool to run gov‘t policies DBM Sec. Benjamin E. Diokno served as resource speaker on the topic, ―Budgeting to Attain the Sustainable Development Goals‖, as part of Ateneo‘s alternative class program, Talakayang Alay sa Bayan (TALAB). LRMC inks P450-M train rehab deal Rail operator Light Rail Manila Corp. (LRMC) recently signed a P450-million agreement with engineering and industrial company Voith Digital Solutions Austria GmBH and Co KG for the rehabilitation and upgrade of the generation-2 trains of Light Rail Transit Line 1 (LRT-1).