Philippines morning news for February 1

Philippines morning news for February 1

Philippines morning newsMoney supply and bank loans sustain growth
Both money supply and bank loans sustained their expansion last year amid strong demand for credit, data from the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas show.

Bicam panel agrees on ‘re-prioritization’ funds’ cap at P200 billion
TO break the impasse on the proposed P3.757-trillion General Appropriations Act of 2019, the Senate and the House of Representatives have agreed to increase the cap of lawmakers’ fund “re-prioritization” to P200 billion from P50 billion.
— Business Mirror

Philippines, Vietnam biggest movers in 2018 corruption index
The annual report on state-level corruption by Transparency International contains few surprises for the Asean region. Singapore is still regarded as the nation with the least corrupt public sector in the region, while the kingdom of Cambodia once again brings up the bottom end of the list.
— AEC News Today

Inflation likely at 4.3 to 5.1 percent in January, says BSP think tank
Inflation in January likely settled at a range of 4.3 to 5.1 percent, with fuel costs driving prices higher, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas’ think tank said Thursday.
— ABS-CBN News

Duterte launches airstrikes on Abu Sayyaf after cathedral attack
The Philippines military has launched airstrikes against homegrown militant group Abu Sayyaf in the restive southern province of Sulu, just days after a splinter group staged a deadly twin bombing attack on a Catholi­c cathedral there.
— The Australian

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Lawmakers move to spare infrastructure from poll ban as 2019 budget talks get back on track
LAWMAKERS making up the bicameral conference committee now hammering out the final version of the proposed P3.757-trillion national budget for 2019 have committed to ensuring ratification next week, with the measure containing a provision that would spare new infrastructure projects from the 45-day public works ban ahead of the May 13 mid-term elections.
— BusinessWorld Online

PH dethrones Thailand as world’s heaviest Internet user
The Philippines has dethroned Thailand as the world’s heaviest user of the Internet.
— Tempo

European Union supports 7 renewable energy projects in PH
The European Union, through the Access to Sustainable Energy Programme, agreed to co-finance seven renewable energy projects that would provide power to around 40,000 households in remote areas of the Philippines, the Energy Department said Thursday.

Activists ask Trudeau to act as Canadian trash continues to rot in Manila
More than 100 community and environment groups in the Philippines are making a plea to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to take out Canada’s trash.
— The Province

PH life insurance industry seen to grow 16% in 2018
A Philippine life insurance industry executive is optimistic about a 16 percent growth in the gross written premiums of the sector in 2018, driven mainly by the rise in the number of the middle class.
— Philippine News Agency

Senate panels: Place erring minors in ‘reformatory center,’ penalize parents
The Senate Justice, Women and Finance committees have approved a bill which seeks to place all minors who commit serious crimes — like murder, homicide and rape — in a “reformatory center.”
— CNN Philippines

Foreigners carried out twin Jolo blasts
THE MILITARY now believes the twin explosions at Jolo Cathedral on Sunday were carried out by two foreign suicide bombers who came from Indonesia in December and linked up with the Ajang-Ajang subgroup of the notorious Abu Sayyaf.
— The Manila Times

Government readies orders to revise customs fees rules, normalize container usage
THE government will issue a joint administrative order (JAO) that will overhaul rules on customs fees and charges in a move seen to reduce operating costs and improve logistics efficiency.
— Business Mirror

BPI, Canadian firm in remittance tie-up
Bank of the Philippines (BPI) has partnered with a leading digital money transfer company from Canada to offer quicker money transfers at lower fees.
— Manila Bulletin

Filipino domestic worker executed in Saudi Arabia for murder
A 39-year-old Filipino household worker has been executed in Saudi Arabia after she was found guilty of murder.
— CNN Philippines

Indonesia expected to watch over cross-border issues with Philippines
North Sulawesi Deputy Governor Steven Kandouw, in the “State Border Management Coordination Meeting in 2019,” expressed hope that the government will pay attention to cross-border issues with neighboring Philippines, SSTP`s Head of Public Relations Christian Iroth said on Wednesday.
— Antara News

Marcos asks military, police: Save newsmen
Ilocos Norte Gov. Imee Marcos has called on Philippine National Police Chief Oscar Albayalde and Armed Forces Chief of Staff Gen. Benjamin Madrigal to devise measures to protect journalists from potential hazards during the campaign season and election coverage for the May polls.

Bottled drinks banned in MRT and LRT lines
Train lines in Metro Manila issued their respective safety advisories on bringing bottled drinks.
— CNN Philippines

China donates P39-M to victims of Jolo blasts
The Chinese Embassy in Manila is donating 5 million renminbi (about PHP38.9 million) to the victims of the recent terror attack in Jolo, Sulu, Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin, Jr. revealed Thursday.
— Philippine News Agency

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Credit growth slows on higher borrowing costs
Credit growth slowed down anew in December due to higher borrowing costs after monetary authorities lifted interest rates by a total of 175 basis points last year to prevent inflation from spiraling out of control, according to data released by the Bangko Sentral ng PIlipinas.
— The Philippine Star

PMO remits P1.8 B to BTr in 2018, surpasses target
The Privatization Management Office (PMO) remitted record contributions to the Bureau of the Treasury, surpassing its target for last year, owing to strong revenues from the sale of several government assets.
— Manila Bulletin

High rice prices seen to hike poverty incidence rate in 2018
FORMER Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Cielito F. Habito said the country’s poverty incidence may see an uptick in 2018 because of the spike in rice prices last year.
— Business Mirror

Fuel surcharge likely to decline by March 2019 — CAB
Air fares may start to decline in March due to the sustained decline in jet fuel prices in recent months, according to the Civil Aeronautics Board.
— The Philippine Star

South Asian firm to invest $50M for PH expansion
SOUTH Asian hotel-and-home chain OYO is set to spend $50 million in the next few years to expand its operations in the Philippines.
— The Manila Times

German program for nurses promises free work visas, language training
PHILIPPINE Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) Administrator Bernard P. Olalia said qualified nurse applicants to Germany will be entitled to free work visas, German language lessons and other perks under the agency’s partnership with the German government.
— BusinessWorld Online

Cigarettes top haul of fakes
The National Committee on Intellectual Property Rights (NCIPR) has seized P23.6 billion worth of pirated and counterfeit goods in 2018, the largest haul since its creation in 2008 and an increase of 188 percent over 2017.
— Malaya

Israel vows to help Philippines defeat terrorism
Israel on Thursday committed to help the Philippines fight terrorism following the deadly bombing in Jolo, Sulu last week.

Oceana urges temporary fishing ban for tawilis
ENVIRONMENT advocate Oceana Philippines has called on government agencies to implement a temporary fishing ban on tawilis (Sardinella Tawilis), to allow the only freshwater sardine in Taal Lake to repopulate.
— The Manila Times

PH to become Asia’s next success story
Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno said the Philippines will remain one of the fastest growing economies in Southeast Asia and in the world.

Russia reaffirms commitment to help PH combat terrorism
The Russian government has reaffirmed its commitment to help the Philippines combat terrorism, Malacañang said Thursday.
— Philippine News Agency

Need for speed: Carts on rails help Manila’s commuters dodge gridlock
Thousands of commuters flock to Manila’s railway tracks every day, but rather than boarding the trains, they climb on to wooden carts pushed along the tracks, to avoid the Philippine capital’s infamous traffic gridlock.
— ABS-CBN News

Delayed ‘Trabaho’ bill fine, but CIT must be cut faster PCCI
BUSINESS leaders are amenable to shelving the passage of the second fiscal reform bill until the next Congress, but said the reduction of corporate income tax (CIT) to 20 percent must be completed by 2024.
— Business Mirror

Motorcycle taxi measure OK’d on second reading
The House of Representatives has approved on second reading a consolidated measure that will pave the way for the operation of so-called motorcycle taxis as alternative commuter vehicles.
— The Philippine Star

Comelec issues social-media spending rules
The Commission on Elections (Comelec) will start regulating social media and web site use for election campaigns this month, but the poll body will monitor only the cost and not the content.
— Business Mirror

House limits access to info on lawmakers’ SALNs
The House of Representatives will require any journalist or interested party to pay a P300 fee to obtain a copy of the statement of assets, liabilities and net worth (SALN) of any of its members.
— The Philippine Star

If true, Panelo says he sees nothing wrong with China building maritime center on disputed Kagitingan Reef
Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo on Thursday, Jan. 31, said he does not see anything wrong with China building a maritime rescue center in Fiery Cross Reef, one of the features claimed by the Philippines in the disputed South China Sea, if this was indeed true.
— Eagle News

MMDA mulls exclusive motorcycle lane
The Metro Manila Development Authority on Thursday announced it was considering designating a separate and exclusive lane for motorcycles once the Road Diet traffic scheme pushed through along Epifanio de los Santos Avenue.

More Manila Bay establishments cited for wastewater violations
The government agency in charge of protecting Manila Bay has cited more establishments for allegedly violating wastewater regulations.
— ABS-CBN News

Comelec alarmed by spate of poll-related violence
MANILA, Philippines – The Commission on Elections (Comelec) is alarmed by the spate attacks against candidates in upcoming midterm elections.

Bureau of Immigration tightens security check on foreigners
The Bureau of Immigration (BI) has tightened its security check among foreigners who enter the country after a series of bombing incidents in Mindanao.
— GMA News

Doctors unite to oppose bill lowering age of criminal liability
The country’s leading alliances of pediatricians, child psychologists, psychiatrists, neurologists, and medical specialists have united to express their strong opposition to the bill seeking to lower the minimum age of criminal responsibility from 15 years old to 12.
— GMA News

DOT sees 27% surge in Japanese tourists in 2019
THE Department of Tourism (DOT) is targeting an influx of Japanese tourists this year, reaching some 800,000 visitors.
— Business Mirror

Duque says Acosta’s claim of DOH payoffs to families of Dengvaxia victims “malicious, baseless, a complete lie”
“Malicious, baseless and a complete lie.” This was how Health Secretary Francisco Duque III described on Thursday, Jan. 31, Public Attorneys Office chief Persida Acosta’s claims the Department of Health paid at least four families P50,000 each for them to drop charges related to the Dengvaxia mess.
— Eagle News

Over 4,000 campus journos join 2019 NSPC in Pangasinan
Some 4,960 campus journalists from across all regions are participating in the National Schools Press Conference (NSPC) from January 28 to February 1 hosted by the Department of Education (DepEd)-Pangasinan I Schools Division in this town.
— Philippine Information Agency

Mixed relay race to make SEAG debut
The mixed gender relay race in athletics debuts in this year’s 30th Southeast Asian Games that the country is hosting from late November to December.
— Tempo

CEO confidence in growth dips dramatically
What difference a year makes. Nearly 30 percent of business leaders believe that global economic growth will decline in the next 12 months, approximately six times the level of 5 percent last year – a record jump in pessimism.
— The Manila Times

More Filipinos believe quality of life improved — SWS
More Filipinos believe their quality of life has improved, a recent Social Weather Stations survey said.
— Eagle News

Landbank extends offer to by PDS stakes to March 15
State-owned Land Bank of the Philippines (Landbank) extended anew the deadline set on its offer to buy out several Philippine Dealing System Holding Corp. (PDS) shareholders to March 15, in its bid to gain controlling stake of the exchange.
— Philippine News Agency

Ernesto Pernia: Upper-middle income status still within reach in 2019 for economy
Despite prevailing uncertainties in the global economy and a high interest rate environment, the Philippines can still hurdle its goal of becoming an upper middle income economy this year, said Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Ernesto Pernia.
— The Philippine Star

Q1 job fairs schedule in Ilocos released
Jobseekers in Ilocos Region will be given more opportunities to land an employment as job fairs schedule for the first quarter of 2019 has been released.
— Philippine Information Agency

Carpio says PH should protest China ‘rescue center’
While Malacañang said the Philippines “should thank” China, Supreme Court Senior Associate Justice Antonio Carpio said the country should protest China’s new “maritime rescue center” in the West Philippine Sea (South China Sea).
— Rappler

Chinese dominates Ilocos Norte’s foreign tourist arrivals
More than three million tourists visited Ilocos Norte in 2018, with Chinese nationals dominating foreign tourist arrivals in this northern gateway of Luzon, the Ilocos Norte Tourism Office (INTO) reported on Thursday.
— Philippine News Agency

House panel OKs mandatory ROTC
The House Committee on Basic Education and Culture has approved a bill that seeks to make Reserve Officers Training Corps (ROTC) mandatory for senior high school students.
— The Manila Times

Cebu Pacific expects to ‘keep fares low’ with 12 new aircraft in 2019
Budget carrier Cebu Pacific said on Thursday, January 31, that travelers can still expect low fares, with 12 new aircraft to be delivered in 2019.
— Rappler

Philippines ready for own space agency: DOST
The Philippines is ripe to establish its own space agency, the country’s science and technology secretary said Thursday.
— ABS-CBN News

Health advocates to reject sin tax hike below P60
Health advocates will reject “anything” below the P60 increase in the sin tax on cigarettes based on the proposal by Senator Manny Pacquiao, citing the Department of Finance preliminary model.

CIMB launches banking presence in Philippines
CIMB Bank, one of the five largest banks in Asean, officially launch its presence in the Philippines, becoming the nation’s first all-digital and mobile-first bank and promising to make banking simpler, more convenient, and truly hassle-free.
— Khmer Times

300 families flee as troopers clash with Ajang-Ajang
Fighting broke out between government troops and members of the Abu Sayyaf-affiliated Ajang-Ajang in Patikul, Sulu Thursday morning, sending more than 300 families fleeing from their homes.

4 slain, 2 wounded in Batangas gun attacks
Four persons were killed and two others were wounded in gun attacks in Batangas on Wednesday.
— The Philippine Star


Feature photo Asian Development Bank


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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