Philippines Morning News For December 18

Philippines Morning News For December 18
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Philippines morning news2020 target: PH eyes 80K foreign retirees
The Philippine Retirement Authority (PRA) plans to increase the number of foreign retirees in the country to 80,000 by 2020 through various incentives, according to the agency’s top official.
Cebu Daily News 

DOE starts crafting PH nuclear power plans
Underpinned by a technical assistance from the Russian Federation State Atomic Energy Cooperation (ROSATOM), the Department of Energy (DOE) announced it is now well on its way into crafting plans for the country’s nuclear power ambitions.
Manila Bulletin 

Tropical Storm Kills 30, and Over 80,000 Flee to Shelters in Philippines
More than 30 people were killed and many others were missing after a slow-moving tropical storm spurred floods and landslides in the central Philippines, officials said on Sunday.
The New York Times

Duterte backtracks on same-sex marriage, says he supports it
President Rodrigo Duterte Sunday expressed support for same-sex marriage, reversing anew his stand on the issue, which has sparked fierce debates in other countries.

800 of 10,000 killings not related to drugs: PNP
PNP chief Ronald dela Rosa yesterday said that around 800 of more than 10,000 killings from July 1, 2016 to October 18 this year were not related to illegal drugs.

PHL’s airport of the future must be built now
Six (at one point, seven) of the world’s 10 best airports are in Asia, and the first three are also in the region. What do all of them have in common? They are destinations by themselves, almost entirely resembling resorts, built by architects and engineers with impeccable design, efficiency and utmost passenger comfort in mind.

ON TELCOS: EO to address permit, ROW issues
The government is working to solve the telecommunication companies’ difficulty in getting permits and right-of-way (ROW) to build cell sites to be able to reach the ideal number of 67,000 towers needed to address the mobile, voice and internet requirements of subscribers, according to the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT).

PH foreign debt falls to $72.36B in Q3 – BSP
The country’s foreign debt stock fell to $72.36 billion in the third quarter of 2017, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) said on Friday, down $5.6 billion from a year earlier.
The Manila Times 

Even if intentions are good, those liable must answer for Dengvaxia mess — Palace
Those who committed wrongdoings that led to the Dengvaxia mess should be accountable even if the previous administration meant well when it administered the vaccine, Malacañang said Sunday.

Coal tax beneficial over the long term
Despite gaining a lot of criticisms from various sectors, the imposition of higher excise tax on coal will help the country in the long run as it sends a “strong policy signal” to investors, according to the Institute for Climate and Sustainable Cities (ICSC).

EU likely to keep PH’s GSP Plus privileges
The European Union (EU) will most likely keep the Philippines’ GSP Plus privileges with EU still believing in the overall democratic space of its trading partner, ignoring President Duterte’s repeated public diatribes for its criticism of the government’s human rights record due to the bloody war on drugs.
Manila Bulletin 

5 more justices to testify vs Sereno
Five more Supreme Court justices are ready to testify in the impeachment proceedings against Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno in the House of Representatives when hearings resume next month.

Globe ‘ready’ for faster internet but permits are ‘biggest hurdle’
Ayala-led Globe Telecom said it has more than 16 Terabits per second (Tbps) of international data capacity ready, enough to service the country’s hunger for faster internet, but can only use a portion of this due to regulatory bottlenecks.

‘Urduja’ maintains strength, to make landfall over Palawan
Tropical Depression Urduja has maintained strength and will make landfall over Northern Palawan, Pagasa said Monday as it advised residents to prepare against floods and landslides.

PH, China to bolster bilateral defense cooperation
Senior defense and military officials of the Philippines and the People’s Republic of China on Friday conducted talks to bolster the two nations’ bilateral defense cooperation. Defense public affairs office chief, Arsenio Andolong, said the Philippine delegation was led by Undersecretary for Defense Policy Ricardo A. David Jr.
Update Philippines 

Paving the way for the third telco player
President Duterte’s policy pronouncement of breaking the duopoly in the telco industry via the entry of a Chinese third player has moved every stakeholder concerned.

Firm eyes wind power as coal tax looms
Listed distribution firm Manila Electric Co.’s (Meralco) power generation subsidiary, Meralco PowerGen Corp. (MGen) is keen on investing in renewable power projects with a focus on wind resource starting next year.

Gov’t to hold information summit vs fake news, Andanar says
Presidential Communications Operations Office chief Martin Andanar on Saturday announced that the government would hold the first information summit to combat fake news in the country in 2018.

TRAIN concerns delay passage of rice QR bill
The passage of a measure amending the Republic Act (RA) 8178 seeking to abolish the quantitative restriction (QR) on rice is now facing delays as Congress focused on the 2018 national budget and the proposed Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) Act.

Expanded martial law ‘always an option’
Expanding martial law beyond Mindanao is always an option, given the threat that Islamic State (IS)-inspired groups may attack anywhere, Palace Communications Secretary Martin Andanar said on Sunday.
The Manila Times 

VIP security business seen booming in PHL
THREE years after leaving the Philippine National Police (PNP), Vicencio Escaler’s professional immersion made no contrasting change. Neither did changes occur in the uniform he wears.

PH, Japan discuss development assistance for MRT-3
Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade met with Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) representatives to discuss official development assistance (ODA) for the MRT-3 Rehabilitation and Maintenance Project, the Department of Transportation (DOTr) said December 17.
Update Philippines 


Feature photo Andy Maluche


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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Leakhena Khat

Leakhena is a junior journalist at AEC News Today who is also currently studying International Relations, which she finds adds perspective to her work reporting on the Asean Community.

“I love what I am doing so much as it gives me a lot of great experience and provides challenges to my mind.

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