Philippines morning news for December 28

Philippines morning news for December 28
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Philippines morning news

NG’s budget deficit widens to P39.1 B in November
The national government’s (NG) budget deficit widened in November as revenue collections moderated during the month amid the administration’s robust spending, data from the Bureau of the Treasury showed yesterday.
— Manila Bulletin

BSP expects forex reserves to improve to $77b next year
The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas expects the gross international reserves to rise to $77 billion in 2019 from the projected $76 billion this year, as the balance of payments is seen to incur a lower deficit next year.

Philippine startups lag behind Southeast Asian counterparts in 2018 funding, but 2019 looks rosy
With a population of 640 million and a consumer base that is rapidly coming online, Southeast Asia is a hotbed for technology startups, attracting venture capital (VC) firms that are racing to fund the region’s next unicorns.
— KrAsia

Signal No. 1 in 2 dozen areas as Usman slowly approaches
Signal No. 1 was raised in more areas late Thursday evening, December 27, while Tropical Depression Usman maintained its strength and slow pace en route to Eastern Visayas.
— Rappler

Chinese steel project to offset SteelAsia’s $1-B billet importation
The joint venture between China’s HBIS Group Co. Ltd. and Huili Investment Fund Management Co. Ltd. and Filipino firm SteelAsia Manufacturing Corp. for the $4.4 billion backward steel integration project will offset at least $1 billion in annual importation of steel for the Filipino company.
— Manila Bulletin

PH one of Asia’s best performers despite high inflation
The Philippines remains one of Asia’s best-performing economies and is even poised to move up to upper middle-income status after managing to put in check an inflation surge which came alongside a spike in world oil prices in 2018.
— Philippine News Agency

BSP caps hike in term deposit rates
The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) capped the increase in term deposit rates by rejecting some of the bids across all tenors at yesterday’s term deposit auction facility (TDF).
— The Philippine Star

SC keeps higher penalty vs. hospital deposit
The Supreme Court has dismissed a petition assailing the constitutionality of the law that increases the penalties for owners of hospitals and clinics and their physicians and personnel who “request, solicit, demand or accept deposits or advance payments as a prerequisite not only for confinement or medical treatment but also for administering basic emergency care.”

Philippines becoming a rich world dumping ground
Over 5,000 tons of hazardous waste from South Korea was recently discovered in the Philippines, marking the latest case of foreign dumping to stir outrage among Filipino officials and environmental groups as the island nation struggles to handle its own gargantuan garbage problem.
— Asia Times

Gov’t releases P48-B tertiary educ subsidy for needy studes
The most important social justice program of the Duterte Administration–Republic Act (RA) 10931, also known as the Universal Access to Quality Tertiary Education Act (UAQTEA)–is now fully felt by millions of students enrolled in state universities and colleges (SUCs) and local universities and colleges (LUCs), with the release of the Tertiary Education Subsidy (TES), one of the core components of the law.
— Philippine News Agency

SteelAsia seeks BoI incentives for P44b worth of new projects
Steel Asia Manufacturing Corp. said it plans to register another P44 billion worth of projects with the Board of Investments, representing the remaining unregistered share from its total investment of P100 billion over the next five years.

Midterm elections, inflation fatigue to delay tax reform passage
The midterm elections for members of Congress in May is seen to further delay the remaining tranches of the Duterte administration’s tax reform program.
— The Philippine Star

VAT-free starting 2019: Medicines for diabetes, high cholesterol, hypertension
Filipinos who suffer from diabetes, high cholesterol, and hypertension could buy more medicine or save money when a provision in the tax reform law takes effect in 2019.
— Rappler

Will the 2019 mid-term elections lead to a ‘Duterte dictatorship’?
President Rodrigo Duterte continues his assault on critics and political opponents
— Asean Today

US warns travellers over security at Manila airport
The United States has warned its citizens that security at the Philippines’s main airport does not meet international standards, urging travellers to exercise “increased caution”.
— Channel NewsAsia

Philippine corporate bond issuance may hit $3.8 bln in 2019
Philippine companies are expected to raise around 200 billion pesos ($3.8 billion) through bond issues next year to fund expansion plans and debt payments, the country’s bond market operator said on Thursday.
— Reuters

Online hiring rises 23% in Nov. — Monster
MONSTER.COM said online hiring activity rose 23% year-on-year in November led by the retail industry.
— BusinessWorld Online

Phoenix issues short term debt paper worth P7B
Phoenix Petroleum Philippines Inc. yesterday issued P7 billion worth of short-term commercial paper (STCP) for its working capital needs as the company follows through its expansion efforts.
— Philippine Daily Inquirer

Fire incidents increased by .84 percent in 2018
Fire incidents in the country increased this year, the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) said yesterday.
— The Philippine Star

Philippine e-payment apps bank on Alibaba and Tencent for growth
In early December, employees of Philippine financial technology startup Voyager Innovations gathered for a town hall meeting to hear from the company’s new foreign owners — including China’s Tencent Holdings, which has ambitious plans for the Southeast Asian market.
— Nikkei Asian Review (paywall)

4.1-M indigents benefit from 4Ps in 2018
In line with its mandate to protect the poor, the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) has served more than 4 million beneficiaries under its Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) this year.
— Philippine News Agency

PHL can meet goal on U.S. tourists despite N.A.I.A. security woes–D.O.T.
THE Department of Tourism (DOT) on Thursday expressed confidence that it can meet its visitor arrivals target from the United States in 2019, as local transport agencies address the safety concerns of the US government about the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (Naia).
— Business Mirror

Transportation dep’t to shift general aviation to Sangley airport by late 2019
THE Department of Transportation (DoTr) said it go ahead with its plan to transfer general aviation flights Sangley airport by the third quarter of 2019, amid a lack of progress in the Cavite government’s plan to develop the airfield there, which is currently an Air Force base.
— BusinessWorld Online

Nearly 18K Visayas folks benefit from gov’t service caravan
Nearly 18,000 people have benefitted from a six-month government “service caravan” that brings various assistance to different provinces in the Visayas, according to the Office of the Presidential Assistant for the Visayas (OPAV).
— Philippine News Agency

Bulacan airport to revive 12,000 has. of coastline
San Miguel Corp. said it expects to generate more jobs and revive 12,000 hectares of Bulacan coastline with the implementation of the P754-billion New Manila International Airport project in Bulacan province in 2019.

Central Bank exempts Specialized Institutional Accounts from reserve requirements
THE Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) on Thursday announced its decision to exclude Specialized Institutional Accounts under Trust (SIT) from being subject to reserve requirements (RR).
— Business Mirror

2 Christmases later, Marawi hostages wait in vain for Duterte’s promises
President Rodrigo Duterte himself promised them livelihood assistance and scholarship for the children when he met them in Marawi City in October 2017, when they were rescued from their captors.
— Philippines Magazine

Albayalde orders Garins to surrender all their guns
Police chief Director General Oscar Albayalde ordered Thursday, December 27, Iloilo 1st District Representative Oscar “Richard” Garin Jr and his father, Guimbal town, Iloilo Mayor Oscar Garin “to immediately turn in all their registered firearms” to the Philippine National Police after their privilege to own guns were cancelled.
— Rappler

DA, private firm to boost Leyte rice sector
THE Department of Agriculture (DA) is set to enter into a partnership with a private company that invested P1.7 billion for the development of a modern rice processing complex and acquisition of various farm machinery in Leyte and southern towns of Samar Island to boost rice industry in these areas.
— The Manila Times

Construction labor shortage alarms DOLE
THE Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) said construction firm DM Consunji Inc. (DMCI) has sought its help as the company needs to hire some 6,000 to 7,000 workers.
— Business Mirror

More money for 2019
Customers look at “money wallets” with peso and dollar-bill designs in Divisoria, Manila on Thursday.
— ABS-CBN News

Comelec: Daraga too hot for comfort; Duterte raises bounty by P20M
President Duterte has recommended to the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to put the town of Daraga in Albay province under its control, after the assassination last week of Ako Bicol Rep. Rodel Batocabe.
— Philippine Daily Inquirer

Labor dep’t study sees IT-BPM as key jobs generator until 2022
THE labor department said the Information Technology and Business Process Management (IT-BPM) will remain the Philippines’ top job generator until 2022.
— BusinessWorld Online

Why President Rodrigo Duterte is most fact-checked public figure in 2018
President Rodrigo Duterte is VERA Files’ most fact-checked public figure, according to its 2018 year-end list. VERA Files is a non-profit media organization that advocates against social media disinformation.
— Philippines Magazine

Thai oil giant commits continued investments in Philippines operations
Despite changes in the management in its parent company, PTT Philippines Corp. will continue invest in the country’s operations and corporate social responsibility (CSR) projects.
— The Philippine Star

More than 400K workers became regular under Duterte admin
President Rodrigo Duterte’s issuance of an executive order protecting the right of the workers to security of tenure has resulted in the regularization of over 411,000 contractual employees, the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) said on Thursday.
— Philippine News Agency

Philippines sets guidelines for China’s hiring of 100,000 teachers
The Philippines’ Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) has set guidelines for the recruitment and deployment of over 100,000 Filipino teachers, who will teach English in China.
— Philippines Magazine

Police file raps vs Iloilo mayor, solon for allegedly mauling cop
Iloilo police filed criminal and administrative cases against congressman Richard Garin and his father, Guimbal town mayor Oscar Garin for allegedly beating up a police officer.
— ABS-CBN News (video)

15 mining exploration projects await TRAIN 2
AT least 15 mining exploration projects look forward to the enactment of the second phase of the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion, or TRAIN 2, to proceed to the development and construction phase, an official of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) said.
— Business Mirror

Top destinations for Filipino travelers in 2018
Whether traveling solo, with their significant other, best friend, family, or the whole gang, Filipinos are eager to get out of their comfort zones to explore what the world has to offer. Question is, where exactly did these Filipino travelers choose to go in 2018?
— The Manila Times


Feature photo Australian Institute of International Affairs

This week’s morning news photo features a defining moment, event, or situation from 2018 for each country as chosen by our editors.


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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