Philippines morning news for January 3

Philippines morning news for January 3

Philippines morning newsSenate lines up final ok of P3.7-trillon budget, worker tenure bills
THE Senate leadership has lined up for plenary deliberation and early approval the proposed P3.7-trillion 2019 national budget on top of other priority bills when Congress resumes regular sessions at the end of the lawmakers’ four-week Christmas vacation on January 14.
— Business Mirror

Philippines’ manufacturing PMI improves at slower pace
Business conditions at Philippines’ manufacturing companies improved further in December, but at a slower pace, supported by expansions in both output and new orders. Purchasing activity grew and employment increased at the quickest rate in four months.
— Nikkei Asian Review (paywall)

ING economist eyes December ‘18 inflation at 5.5%
Philippines’ December 2018 inflation rate is seen to slide further to 5.5 percent as supply-side issues have been addressed and oil prices continue to decline in the international market.
— Philippine News Agency

Tropical Depression Usman death toll climbs to 87
The death toll from Tropical Depression Usman in Bicol, the Visayas and Southern Tagalog has reached 87, with 20 others missing, the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) reported yesterday.
— The Philippine Star

Boracay closure cost: A high of P83 billion in business, P28 billion in wages–PIDS
THE closure of Boracay cost the Philippine economy and Filipino workers billions in revenue and income between May and October 2018, according to state-owned think tank Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS).
— Business Mirror

Bill banning single-use plastics filed
A BILL calling for the phase-out of single-use plastic products has been filed at the House of Representatives.
— BusinessWorld Online

DICT: Government’s ‘common towers’ policy rife with legal loopholes
THE draft policy for the deployment of common telco towers in the Philippines is illegal and anticompetitive as it limits the number of providers to two while infringing on the rights of congressional telco franchise holders.
— Business Mirror

House to kick off probe into alleged budget anomalies under Diokno
The House is opening on Thursday, January 3, its probe into the alleged anomalies in the current 2018 budget and the proposed P3.757-trillion budget in 2019, both prepared under Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno.
— Rappler

Manila Bay worse, P3-billion rehab eyed
Manila Bay is worse off a decade after a Supreme Court decision ordering local government units and government agencies to rehabilitate it, and officials of LGUs surrounding the bay may face administrative charges soon.

Farm damage from Usman hits P431.21 million
Losses incurred by farmers and fishermen due to the onslaught of Tropical Depression Usman have climbed to P431.21 million, the Department of Agriculture (DA) said on Wednesday.
— Business Mirror

Mining town gets P37-M water project
THE fast-growing population in the upland mining barangay (village) of Didipio in Kasibu town, Nueva Vizcaya, has prompted OceanaGold to provide it with a P37-million water system.
— The Manila Times

DENR pushes gov’t-led mineral exploration
The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) is planning to push for various government-led mineral explorations across different parts of the Philippines, which has long been identified as one of the highly mineralized countries in the world.
— Manila Bulletin

WB cites cash transfer program’s weaknesses
ALTHOUGH the government’s conditional cash transfer (CCT) program has exceeded some of its objectives, the World Bank cited as a concern a reduction in number of families covered and missed targets in other metrics, as well as inefficient distribution channels.
— BusinessWorld Online

Labor officials say minimum wage hike should have been at least P100
Philippine labor authorities admit the P25 minimum wage increase in November should have been higher.
— ABS-CBN News (video)

Comelec allots 8-hour voting for Bangsamoro law plebiscite
The Commission on Elections (Comelec) has allotted eight hours for the voting period for the plebiscite to ratify Republic Act 11054 otherwise known as the Organic Law for the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM).
— Philippine News Agency

House of Representatives probes Bicol flood control funds
The investigation of the House of Representatives’ rules committee on the multibillion-peso flood control projects of the government will push through here today even if Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno is on vacation in the United States.
— The Philippine Star

UK, Australia Raise Security Warnings after Bombing in Southern Philippines
Britain and Australia have cautioned their citizens against traveling to the southern Philippines in the wake of a bombing that killed two people and injured more than three dozen at a shopping mall in Cotabato City on New Year’s Eve.
— Benar News

‘Telcos likely to challenge draft common tower policy in court’
The draft common towers policy as proposed by presidential adviser on economic affairs and information technology communications Ramon Jacinto will likely bring the government to court, with potential violations to the telcos’ legislative franchise still unaddressed, according to Information and Communications Technology acting Secretary Eliseo Rio.
— The Philippine Star

South Korea told to get trash out of Philippines by next week
A Bureau of Customs (BOC) official said on Wednesday that he had told South Korean authorities to send 6,500 tons of garbage that were illegally shipped to the Philippines back to their country by next week.
— Philippine Daily Inquirer

PH eyes more debt paper sale in China, Japan
The government plans to again borrow through the panda and samurai bond markets this year after successful issuances last year that raised additional financing for its priority programs, including the ambitious “Build, Build, Build.”

Interpol search for Philippines woman, 31, working in Sydney who ‘tried to kill her young daughter TWICE’
A Filipino woman working in Sydney is wanted by authorities in her homeland after she allegedly tried to murder her young daughter twice.
— Daily Mail

Appetite for long-term bonds seen picking up
THE BUREAU of the Treasury (BTr) expects market appetite for long-term bonds to pick up this year driven by expectations that inflation will decelerate further.
— BusinessWorld Online

File yearly reports before March 1, foreigners told
The Bureau of Immigration (BI) on Wednesday reminded all registered foreigners to file their reports in any immigration office before March 1 or face fines.
— The Manila Times

Catbalogan fire guts 61 homes; P8 million in damages
At least 61 houses were gutted by fire in Catbalogan City, Samar early Wednesday, causing P8 million in estimated damages.

Philippines community converts plastic fishing nets to carpet
Island community of mostly poor fishermen in the Philippines has found a way to balance protecting their source of livelihood, the ocean, while generating an income.
— UCA News (video)

Planters aim to resume export of abaca to India in Q1
The Philippines is targeting to resume the shipment of raw abaca fiber to India within the first quarter in its bid to maintain its reputation as the world’s top exporter of the natural fiber.
— Business Mirror

Davao Business Bureau expects over 39,000 permit renewals
THE DAVAO City Business Bureau is expecting more than 39,000 business permit renewals this year, with processing to start Thursday, Jan. 3.
— BusinessWorld Online

P20-million fund for Quezon City data collection set
Quezon City Vice Mayor Joy Belmonte on Wednesday said she would commence the collection of comprehensive records on health, livelihood, education and other concerns of the constituents to determine the areas requiring further attention from the city government.

Term deposit rates ease on high demand
Term deposits fetched lower rates across all tenors as banks swarmed the first auction for 2019 with funds coming back into the financial system.
— The Philippine Star

Region 2 LGUs get tech help to promote projects to investors
Local government units (LGUs) in Region 2 are getting some technical help from the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) in promoting their proposed projects to investors.
— Business Mirror

House committee to start probe into DBM, Sorsogon contracts
THE House Rules Committee will start on Thursday its investigation into the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) in relation to the award of certain infrastructure contracts in Sorsogon.
— BusinessWorld Online

Joma Sison: Ousting Duterte is top priority for 2019
Communist rebels are open to resuming peace negotiations in 2019, but overthrowing the Duterte government is their top priority.
— CNN Philippines

Cavitex Infrastructure sees traffic volume increasing 6%
Cavitex Infrastructure Corp. said it expects traffic volume along Manila-Cavite Expressway to increase 6 percent this year.

Zamboanga Sibugay vice mayor gets 8 years for graft
For giving a bigger calamity assistance to her husband and sister when she was mayor, Vice Mayor Gemma Adana of Naga, Zamboanga Sibugay has been sentenced to up to eight years in prison.
— The Philippine Star

Many small drugstores fail to comply with VAT-exempt rule
Hundreds of maintenance medicines are now exempted from value-added tax. The reprieve took effect January 1.
— ABS-CBN News (video)

Listed firms seen to reap benefits of better 2019
Listed consumer companies that were affected by inflationary pressures in the first half of 2018 are likely to reap the benefits of a better 2019, according to a report by BDO Nomura on Philippine equities.
— The Philippine Star

SMC-Meralco consortium investing P99b in coal plant
The joint venture of SMC Global Power Holding Corp. and Meralco PowerGen Corp. plans to spend P99 billion to put up a 1,200-megawatt coal project in Mariveles, Bataan.

Taxpayer asks SC to stop 3rd telco award to Mislatel
A taxpayer has filed a petition to intervene in the Supreme Court (SC) case that sought a stop to the government’s award of the third telecommunications slot to the Mindanao Islamic Telephone Co., Inc. (Mislatel).
— Manila Bulletin

Better or worse? The state of Philippine media according to watchdogs
In 2018, Filipino journalists continued to face online harassment, violence and various threats, according to local media monitoring groups.
— ABS-CBN News

Northern Samar plunges deeper into poverty—solon
Northern Samar, seen by some economists as over a barrel, has been plunged deeper into poverty as it was hit by a double whammy—low copra prices and floods brought by Typhoon “Usman,” which killed at least 68 people, a House leader said on Wednesday.


Feature photo Presidential Communications Operations Office

This week’s morning news photo focuses on the death, pain, and loss that typically occurs at this time of year on Asean roads due to drunk driving, speeding, and a failure to wear protective helmets when travelling on motorbikes.


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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