Philippines morning news for December 17

Philippines morning news for December 17

Philippines morning newsHot money posts November net inflow of $832M
SHORT-TERM investments made by foreign investors to the Philippines turned positive in November this year, indicating a resurgence of favorable global investor sentiment toward the country for the coming months.
— Business Mirr

PH external debt rises 5.6% as of end-September
Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Governor Nestor A. Espenilla Jr. said the country’s outstanding external debt went up by 5.6 percent or $4 billion to $76.4 billion as of end-September this year from $72.4 billion in the same period in 2017 with new borrowings during the quarter period.
— Manila Bulletin

Economy seen growing over 7% in 2019
Nomura Securities Ltd. expects the Philippines to book faster economic expansion with gross domestic product (GDP) growing above seven percent next year amid the election-related spending boost.
— The Philippine Star

OFW remittances jump to $21 billion– lawmaker
The amount of money millions of overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) are sending home to their families is increasing and has reached more than $21 billion (more than P1 trillion), the lone representative of OFWs in Congress said yesterday.
The Philippine Star

China firm to invest $4.4 billion in Mindanao steel plant
One of the world’s largest steel makers from China, HBIS Group Co. Ltd. is set to invest $4.4 billion to build an integrated steel complex in Mindanao.
— The Philippine Star

$1.4B steel plant to lure appliance, auto projects: BOI
The Board of Investments (BOI) said the Philippines hopes to attract more investments in the assembly of vehicles and appliances with the entry of China’s HBIS Group Co.Ltd., the largest industrial investment in the country.
— Malaya

Solon alleges at least ₱550-M infra projects linked to budget chief’s in-laws
The solon who questioned Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno for insertions in the 2019 budget said at least ₱550 million worth of infrastructure projects were found to have links to the Cabinet official’s in-laws.
— CNN Philippines

Investments seen hitting record
The Board of Investments (BOI is poised to end the year with about P850 billion worth of commitments based on the pipeline projects expected to be approved in the remainder of the year.
— Malaya

BoI expects P792-b investments
Projects approved by the Board of Investments are expected to hit an all-time high of P792 billion by year-end, surpassing the 2018 target of P680 billion, according to Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez.

Andaya alleges ex-Cabinet member ‘parked’ P300M in infra projects
House Majority Leader Rolando Andaya Jr. (Camarines Sur) said in a press statement on Sunday that he has received information that a former member of the Duterte Cabinet was allegedly involved in “parking” at least P300 million in infrastructure projects.
— The Philippine Star

P300-million pork misuse bared
House Majority Leader and Camarines Sur Rep. Rolando Andaya Jr. on Sunday said a former Cabinet official seeking an elective post has allegedly parked at least P300 million in infrastructure projects in the national budget.

Politics with a dash of murder
In the Philippines, the life expectancy of mayors and their deputies can be very short. A recent spate of public assassinations of local officials in broad daylight brought the spotlight back on political killings in the country, now dubbed the “murder capital of Asia” by opposition senator Antonio Trillanes.
— The Asean Post

Power projects in regions to get P1.26-B EU funding
THE European Union (EU) on Thursday contributed €21 million (about P1.26 billion) in grants that will bankroll clean energy projects in the regions estimated to provide power to thousands of households.
— Business Mirror

Personal Property Security Act to ease bank lending to MSMEs
The enactment of the Personal Property Security Act (PPSA) into law will improve the access of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) to bank credit, and give way to the Duterte administration’s goal of expanding financial inclusion, the Department of Finance (DOF) said.
— The Philippine Star

Rice tariff bill not expected to significantly raise imports — USDA
THE US Department of Agriculture does not expect significant growth in the volume of rice imports in Markey Year (MY) 2018-2019 even with the passage of the rice tariffication bill.
— BusinessWorld Online

Senators shun railroading of Charter-change measure
SENATE leaders thumbed down renewed efforts to railroad proposed Charter changes, embodied in Resolution of Both Houses (RBH 15) approved by the House of Representatives on third and final reading before adjourning on December 13.
— Business Mirror

90% service fee share for workers on 2nd reading
THE HOUSE of Representatives approved on second reading the bill increasing the service charge benefits of rank-and-file employees in the hospitality industry.
— BusinessWorld Online

Workers’ rights caught in the crossfire in Mindanao, Philippines
“Working people and their families are bearing the brunt of President Duterte’s divisive politics. Extending Martial Law in Mindanao gives the green light to further militarisation of workplaces and entire communities.
— AEC News Today/ PR Newswire

House to scrutinize budget for flood mitigation
THE ALLEGED parked funds for flood mitigation projects will be up for scrutiny by the House rules committee, Majority Leader Rolando G. Andaya, Jr. said.
— BusinessWorld Online

‘Higher sin taxes not enough to fund health program’
The additional revenue to be generated by two House-approved bills that seek to increase tobacco and alcohol excise taxes may not be enough to bridge the P40-billion funding gap for the government’s universal health care (UHC) program, the Department of Finance (DOF) said.
— The Philippine Star

DOE to phase out subsidies for off-grid areas
Filipino consumers’ pockets will be freed up of roughly P18 billion worth of annual power cost subsidies with the plan of the Department of Energy (DOE) to phase out the universal charge for missionary electrification (UCME) line item in the electric bills.
— Manila Bulletin

Public offered P7.25 for Melco shares bought at P14
A tender is an offer to buy out the public’s holdings, whether common shares or non-voting preferred shares, sold to them by listed companies.
— The Manila Times

Motorbike riders protest LTFRB order, 2-plate proposal
Two years ago, Ryan Rillera was the branch manager of a well-known fast food joint. Although the salary was adequate, his work took him away from his family.
— Philippine Daily Inquirer

Customs foils smuggling of snakes from Indonesia
THE airport customs bureau foiled an attempt to smuggle into the country two shipments from Indonesia, which were discovered to contain “blood python.”
— Business Mirror

Davao livestock, poultry raisers get P130 M loan
The Department of Agriculture is extending P130 million in loan funds for livestock and poultry raisers in Davao City for the establishment of facilities to ensure growth of the sectors in the region.
— The Philippine Star

‘Swinging’ modus in Mindanao eco zone exposed
Puwersa ng Bayaning Atleta (PBA) Party-list Rep. Jericho “Koko” Nograles on Sunday sounded an alarm over the supposed “swinging” operation at the Mindanao International Container Terminal Services Inc. (MICT) at the Phividec Industrial Estate complex.
— Manila Bulletin

21 groups eyeing oil, gas blocks
Twenty-one groups expressed interest in the latest Philippine Conventional Energy Contracting Program to develop indigenous sources of energy, a government official said.

Treasury bill rates seen steady as central bank halts tightening
RATES of Treasury bills (T-bill) on offer today are expected to move sideways amid steady demand following the decision of the central bank to keep key interest rates steady.
— BusinessWorld Online

Peso forecast to further fall to 55:$1 in 2019
The peso is expected to further lose ground next year, settling at 55 against the dollar by end-2019 due to a widening current account deficit, said London-based Capital Economics.
— The Philippine Star

How emerging Asian market has split apart for investors
Two broad factors shape emerging-markets investing.
— Financial Express

Yields on government debt end flat after BSP decision
YIELDS ON government securities were flat last week after the central bank kept policy settings steady amid easing inflation expectations.
— BusinessWorld Online

Philippines celebrates as Balangiga church bells toll again
People flocked to the Balangiga Church in the Philippines as one of the three historic bells tolled for the first time in 117 years on Sunday.
— Aljazeera (video)

DBP lends P1.6 B to CamSur projects
State-owned Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP) released P1.6 billion worth of loans to Camarines Sur for infrastructure, public facilities and social services projects.
— Manila Bulletin

Palace probes Balangiga town plaza incident
A report that some members of the Catholic clergy were asked by a Presidential Management Staff (PMS) member to leave the Balangiga bells turnover before President Rodrigo Duterte’s arrival is already being probed, Malacañang said Sunday.
— Philippine News Agency

New species named after Asean biodiversity expert
Theresae, a new edaphic-endemic species in Dinagat and Mindanao Islands, was named after Dr Theresa Mundita S Lim, the executive director of the Asean Centre for Biodiversity and former director of the Philippines’ Department of Environment and Natural Resources Biodiversity Management Bureau (DENR-BMB).
— The Nation (annoying pop-ups)

BIR sues electrical contractor for failure to pay electronically
The Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) said taxpayers must pay taxes they themselves declared, or face tax fraud charges.
— Manila Bulletin

Multisectoral partnership forged to promote Filipino creativity and unique culture
The Philippine creative economy sector has received a big ‘shot in the arm’ following the signing of a three-year multisectoral partnership between the British Council, the National Commission for Culture and Arts (NCCA), the Board of Investments (BOI) and the Creative Economy Council of the Philippines (CECP) to promote Filipino creativity and unique culture.
— Manila Bulletin


Feature photo LWF/Sean Hawkey

This week’s Philippines morning news feature photo acknowledges International Human Solidarity Day, December 20.


Find our previous morning news feature photos in the AEC News Today Morning News Feature Photos gallery where you will find a pictorial display of daily life throughout the Asean Economic Community (AEC).

Philippines morning news by AEC News Today is your one stop source for Philippines news on matters of governance and policies affecting Asean business communities. It is published M-F by AEC News Today: Governance, not government; policies not politics.


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Stella-maris Ewudolu

Journalist at AEC News Today

Stella-maris graduated with a Bachelor of Arts, Education from Ebonyi State University, Nigeria in 2005.

Between November 2010 and February 2012 she was a staff writer at Daylight Online, Nigeria writing on health, fashion, and relationships. From 2010 – 2017 she worked as a freelance screen writer for ‘Nollywood’, Nigeria.

She joined AEC News Today in December 2016.

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