Philippines morning news for January 11

Philippines morning news for January 11

Philippines morning newsPhilippines’ October net FDI lowest in 15 months
Foreign direct investment (FDI) in the Philippines dipped to its lowest in 15 months in October, but inflows in the first 10 months of 2018 were 1.8 percent higher compared to the year-earlier period, the central bank said on Thursday.
— Today Online

Trade deficit widened 61% to $37.7 billion in 11 months
The trade deficit widened 19 percent in November to $3.9 billion from a $3.3-billion shortfall a year ago, as imports continued to grow while exports declined, the Philippine Statistics Authority said Thursday.

11-month infrastructure spending up almost 50% to P722 billion
Infrastructure spending for January to November recorded an almost 50-percent increase to P721.8 billion compared to the same period last year.
— Business Mirror

Peso rediscount loans surge to P71.5 billion in 2018
Loans availed by banks through the peso rediscount facility surged to P71.52 billion in 2018 following the series of interest rate hikes implemented by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) to help ease inflation.
— The Philippine Star

Inflation projected to dip below 4% in 2019
INFLATION is expected fall 4% this year with risks to prices seen balancing, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) said, after the indicator spiked in 2018.
— BusinessWorld Online

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EU allocates P7.83-M aid to ‘Usman’ victims
The European Union (EU) has allocated EUR130,000 or approximately PHP7.83 million aid for victims of the flash floods and landslides triggered by Tropical Depression Usman in December 2018.
— Philippine News Agency

Japanese grant to promote sericulture and silk production in PH
The Japanese government on Thursday signed a US$426,168 (approximately P22.15 million) grant assistance to help boost the country’s production of silk through sericulture or the art of silk making.
— Manila Bulletin

Former Philippines banker jailed over US$81 million cyberheist of Bangladesh’s central bank
A former banker in the Philippines was handed a lengthy jail term and US$109 million fine on Thursday in the first conviction over a cyberheist which saw US$81 million stolen from Bangladesh’s central bank.
— South China Morning Post

Farm output growth slowed to 1% in 2018
Ahead from the release of official figures from the Philippine Statistics Authority, Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol said the farming sector grew by 1 percent in 2018, due to the effects of 13 weather disturbances that ravaged the country last year.
— Malaya

CA upholds P50-M theft raps vs. Indonesian bizman, et al.
The Court of Appeals (CA) on Thursday ordered the Marikina City Regional Trial Court (RTC) to proceed with the PHP50-million qualified theft case filed by San Miguel Holdings Corporation (SMHC) against Indonesian businessman Shadik Wahono and his co-respondents.
— Philippine News Agency

Manila-Phnom Penh flight to launch in April
Philippine Airlines (PAL) has announced it will launch a flight service to Phnom Penh from Manila in early April.
— Bangkok Post

DENR looks at possible closure of at least 50 hotels, establishments polluting Manila Bay
The Tourism Congress of the Philippines (TCP) has questioned why President Rodrigo Duterte seemed to have singled out hotels as pollutants to Manila Bay during his recent speech.
— CNN Philippines

Telcos back bill vs online infringement
Globe Telecom Inc., along with the international Coalition Against Piracy (CAP), backed the proposed bill ordering the blocking of websites that illegally distribute copyrighted material like videos, music and gaming.
— Malaya

APAC creditworthiness stable – Moody’s
Overall creditworthiness in the Asia Pacific (APAC) region, which includes the Philippines, is stable this year but US-China trade tensions could weigh on regional growth, according to Moody’s Investors Service.
— The Manila Times

Local glass makers urge DTI to impose import standards
Local glass manufacturers said they expect the Trade Department to re-impose the mandatory standards for both locally-manufactured and imported glass products.

Inflation for low-income households eases in Nov.
INFLATION, as experienced by low-income families, softened in November driven by slowdowns in the growth of prices of food and utilities, the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) reported yesterday.
— BusinessWorld Online

Hard-to-fill jobs in PHL down 47%–D.O.L.E
The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) said on Tuesday that the number of hard-to-fill jobs went down by 47 percent in the last decade as academic institutions heed their labor market advisories.
— Business Mirror

Dams with seismic monitors installed in Benguet
The Aboitiz-owned dams and hydropower generation facility in Benguet have been installed with equipment capable of monitoring earth movement, which may affect the structural integrity of the facilities.
— Philippine News Agency

Local banks grapple with biggest default in PH corporate history
Five of the country’s largest banks are rushing to cover a combined loan exposure of $412 million, most of it lent without the benefit of collateral protection, after the local shipbuilding unit of Korean conglomerate Hanjin declared bankruptcy earlier this week—the biggest corporate default in Philippine history.
— Philippine Daily Inquirer

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Duterte: Kill loan sharks to end ‘5-6’ lending scheme
President Rodrigo Duterte on Thursday threatened to kill loan sharks engaged in the infamous “5-6” money lending scheme that was perceived to have roped many poor Filipinos in debt.

China-funded Pasig River bridges hit snags; big railway projects to start
A couple of planned China-funded bridges crossing Pasig River have hit a snag and now facing delay while two massive railway projects—one linking Clark and Subic freeports and the other, Manila and the Bicol Region—will start construction this year.
— Philippine Daily Inquirer

How powerful is the Philippine passport in 2019?
The Philippines improved its ranking in the world’s most powerful passports with Filipinos allowed to enter 66 countries visa-free, according to the 2019 Henley Passport Index.
— ABS-CBN News

Philippine Airlines wants to be a bridge between North America and Asia
Philippine Airlines is expanding its routes and opening new destinations ahead of the entry of a new strategic investor.
— Nikkei Asian Review (paywall)

Duterte signs law on 300% increase in pension for war veterans
PRESIDENT Rodrigo R. Duterte has signed a law increasing the monthly pension of war veterans to “300%” beginning this year.
— BusinessWorld Online

NEA issues rules on EC resiliency fund
The National Electrification Administration (NEA) has issued the implementing rules and regulations (IRR) of the Electric Cooperatives Emergency and Resiliency Fund Act which will ensure orderly and continuing means of financial assistance to electric cooperatives in the form of grants for the restoration or rehabilitation of damaged infrastructure after force majeure events.
— Malaya

NTC, Mislatel sign deal for national broadband
State-run National Transmission Corp. and Mislatel Consortium of Davao-based businessman Dennis Uy and China Telecommunications Corp. on Thursday signed a memorandum of understanding to implement the National Broadband Plan.

Increase in minimum float for better corporate governance
Corporate governance is a system of rules and policies by which a company is directed and controlled.
— Vantage Asia

Makati City 2018 revenue P17.8 billion
THE Makati City government said it collected P17.8 billion in 2018, mainly from business tax and real estate tax, beating its full-year target of P15.67 billion.
— BusinessWorld Online

Black Nazarene devotees leave 43 trucks of trash after traslacion
The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) has collected more than 43 trucks of garbage a day after the traslacion, or the procession marking the Feast of the Black Nazarene last Wednesday, an official said yesterday.
— The Philippine Star

Health insurance claims in E. Visayas reaches P3.9-B in 2018
The Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) has paid a record-high of PHP3.9 billion for benefits in Eastern Visayas last year, up by 6 percent than the previous year’s payment.
— Philippine News Agency

Shell stations start collecting higher fuel taxes — Energy dep’t
PILIPINAS Shell Petroleum Corp. has adjusted the prices of the petroleum products it is selling to reflect the implementation of the higher excise and value-added taxes under the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion, or TRAIN law.
— BusinessWorld Online

DA allots P100-M to compensate Cordillera veggie farmers
The Department of Agriculture (DA), through the Agricultural Credit Policy Council (ACPC), has allocated PHP100 million for the Cordillera vegetable farmers, who were forced to dump or throw away truckloads of vegetables because there were no buyers.
— Philippine News Agency

Duterte: Things would be easier if only we could bomb communists
President Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday said things would have been easier for the government if it could just drop bombs in lairs of communist rebels, as he urged members of the New People’s Army to just surrender and return to the fold of the law.
— ABS-CBN News

Dominguez bats for liberal regulatory system for Fintech
Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III in a statement on Thursday underscored the need to put in place a liberal regulatory environment to enable financial technologies (Fintech), that would help Filipinos ride the digital wave, flourish in the country.
— Philippine News Agency

World Bank cites Philippine Rural Development Project as model program
The country’s rural development program has been cited by the World Bank as one of the most outstanding programs that is worth replicating by other nations.
— The Philippine Star

DSWD assures beneficiaries increase in subsidies despite reenacted budget
Despite the Philippine government now operating on a reenacted budget, the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) gave assurances that the increase in the benefits of the unconditional cash transfer (UCT) program will be implemented as scheduled this year.
— Rappler

Duterte signs law allowing private employees to work from home
President Rodrigo Duterte has signed the Telecommuting Act, which allows employees in the private sector to work from home.
— CNN Philippines

Forex rules further liberalized by BSP
Foreign exchange (FX) rules have been further liberalized by monetary authorities, a development expected to give investors greater flexibility in terms of managing investments and cash flows.
— The Manila Times

Palace blames detractors for lower democracy rank
Malacañang on Thursday denied that the government is unleashing legal attacks against the opposition after the Philippines’s ranking again declined in the 2018 edition of The Economist Intelligence Unit’s (EIU) Democracy Index.
— Business Mirror

DOT: 305 establishments in Boracay now accredited
Over 300 establishments have been accredited in Boracay.
— Eagle News

Rizal prov’l police chief reinstated, 19 cops face dismissal
Chief Supt. Edward Carranza, regional director of the Police Regional Office (PRO4A) in Calabarzon, on Wednesday announced the reinstatement of relieved Rizal Provincial Director Senior Supt. Lou Evangelista.
— Philippine News Agency

Duterte vows to avoid US arms purchases
President Rodrigo Duterte on Thursday said his administration will no longer purchase arms and military equipment from the United States after the latter threatened to impose sanctions on countries buying military equipment from Russia.
— ABS-CBN News

Duterte dares clergy: Refute ‘Altar of Secrets,’ I’ll crucify myself on Holy Week
President Rodrigo Duterte on Thursday offered a bold challenge to the clergy: Disprove revelations contained in the book “Altar of Secrets” and he would have himself nailed on the cross.

3 Pangasinan farmers associations get P13-M agri aid
Three farmers associations in the province have received PHP13 million worth of agricultural machineries and capital from the World Bank, the Department of Agriculture, and the provincial government of Pangasinan, under the Philippine Rural Development Project (PRDP).
— Philippine News Agency

Progress Between China And Philippines Can’t Guarantee Peace In South China Sea – OpEd
Despite warmer ties over the past two years, China’s maritime row with the Philippines did not escape discussion during President Xi Jinping’s historic visit to Manila on November 20 and 21.
— Eurasia Review

Lacson urges DBM to release 4th tranche of gov’t workers’ salary hike
Senator Panfilo Lacson on Thursday, Jan. 10, urged the Department of Budget and Management to release the fourth tranche of increase in the salaries of government workers, saying there was funding for the same even if the 2019 budget has not been passed.
— Eagle News

Oust Andaya for budget delays, says Villafuerte
A lawmaker on Thursday recommended to the House of Representatives to kick out Majority Leader Rolando Andaya Jr. as majority leader for his “non-stop maneuvers” in allegedly derailing the already-delayed approval of the proposed 2019 national budget.
— The Manila Times

UCT grant increased to P300 a month
Recipients of the unconditional cash transfer (UCT) who are not included in the list of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program’s (4Ps) regular beneficiaries will each receive a PHP300 monthly cash grant this year.
— Philippine News Agency

Duterte signs Telecommuting Act into law
A MEASURE institutionalizing telecommuting as an alternative work scheme has been signed into law by President Rodrigo R. Duterte, as confirmed on Thursday by Malacañang and also by Senator Emmanuel Joel J. Villanueva, one of the measure’s principal authors.
— BusinessWorld Online

NegOcc farmers get P87M in crop insurance claims
A total of 18,005 enrolled rice and corn farmers in Negros Occidental received indemnity claims from the Philippine Crop Insurance Corp. (PCIC) amounting to almost PHP87 million in 2018.
— Philippine News Agency

Inflation-ravaged 2018 shakes faith in regional wage-setting
FOR NEARLY three decades, wages in the Philippines were set by region, a practice which has been questioned after inflation averaged 5.2% in 2018, thereby eroding the spending power of workers faster than the system could keep up.
— BusinessWorld Online

‘Traslacion’ ends 21-hour journey
The Black Nazarene icon was brought back to its home in Quiapo Church in Manila before the break of dawn on Thursday after 21 hours, marking the end of one of the biggest religious activities in the country, the “Traslacion.”
— The Manila Times

DoLE curbs deployment of domestic workers
THE Department of Labor and Employment (DoLE) has issued an order limiting the deployment of household service workers (HSWs) or domestic helpers to the Middle East by 10 percent.
— The Manila Times

CEZA grants license to Singapore fintech firm
THE Cagayan Economic Zone Authority (CEZA) has allowed a Singaporean financial technology (fintech) company to offer fintech solutions and offshore virtual currency exchanege services.
— The Manila Times

Mayor Sara, DENR, Aboitiz firm up deal on marine conservation
The city government, the Aboitiz Group and the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) have further strengthened its partnership for the protection and conservation of marine life, particularly the endangered hawksbill turtles.
— Philippine News Agency

Duterte mulls issuing EO for total firecracker ban
After issuing an executive order limiting the use of fireworks, President Rodrigo Duterte said he is now eyeing to release another order to ban the use of firecrackers “altogether.

Parts of gun allegedly used in Batocabe slay recovered from septic tank in Camarines Sur
The police on Thursday, Jan. 10, recovered parts of the gun allegedly used to kill Rep. Rodel Batocabe from a septic tank in the house of one of the suspects in Camarines Sur.
— Eagle News

Imus offers free surgical services
The city government, in partnership with Philippine American Group of Educators and Surgeons (PAGES), will offer free surgery services for patients here on February 2 to 9.
— Philippine News Agency

Duterte wants to ‘arm’ Pinoys in war on Reds
President Rodrigo Duterte is mulling the “arming of everyone” if the communist rebels continue their hostilities against innocent civilians and government forces.
— The Manila Times


Feature photo Michael Landicho

This week’s Philippines morning news feature photo depicts the effects of tropical storm Usman in the regions of Bicol and Eastern Visayas.


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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