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EXPLAINER: Russia’s tanker fleet too small to bypass oil price cap

Maintaining current seaborne flows of 3.5 million barrels per day would require about a third more oil tankers than Russia has access to, says analyst Alexei Gromov.....»»

Category: newsSource: rappler rapplerNov 25th, 2022

UN, Turkey, Ukraine press ahead with Black Sea grain deal despite Russian pullout

Russia halts its role in the Black Sea deal for an 'indefinite term,' cutting shipments from one of the world's top grain exporters, because it said it could not 'guarantee safety of civilian ships' traveling under the pact after an attack on its Black Sea fleet.....»»

Category: newsSource:  rapplerRelated NewsOct 31st, 2022

Win-win cooperation

PEACE-MAKER Jose de Venecia Jr.Former Speaker of the House Lebanon and Israel, two countries technically at war, signed several days ago a historic agreement settling their years-long maritime border conflict involving oil and gas fields in the Mediterranean Sea. The accord will raise huge revenues and ease tensions not only between the two countries but in the region. Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid said it “will strengthen Israel’s security, inject billions into Israel’s economy, and ensure stability of our northern border.” It will also contribute greatly to Lebanon’s economic recovery and political stability as the country has been beset with financial difficulties for three years now. On the maritime disputes, the one that is causing grave concern is in the West Philippine Sea/South China Sea, sparked by the raging disagreement and conflicting sovereignty claims. But we have repeatedly pointed out that there is the potential for a peaceful settlement. We had the privilege to officially propose in 2004-2005, then as speaker of the house, the three-nation Seismic Agreement officially signed and undertaken by Manila, Beijing and Hanoi. Its aim was to assess the area’s potential for oil/gas exploration and development preparatory to drilling and create the environment for peace and cooperation. Hydrocarbon specialists of the three countries pronounced the area’s prospects as “promising.” We explained that the rival nations could convert the area from one of conflict into a zone of peace, friendship, cooperation, and development. We must find ways and means to jointly develop its oil/gas potential to help lessen our expensive common dependence on distant petroleum sources in the Persian/Arab Gulf of the Middle East. Imagine the potential for peace in the heartland of the West Philippine Sea if we undertake a joint development of its resources. From an area of conflict, it could be transformed into a landscape and seascape of small seaports, airports and oil pipelines. Fishing villages and small tourism townships could rapidly rise and the contested areas could become the untrammeled passage way for global shipping, carrying more than 50 percent of the sea freight of the world. We have always pointed out that this is perhaps the most realistic, most common-sensical solution to the problem and which could be joined by Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei, and Taiwan; and could also be the same formula for the dangerous problem between China and Japan in the tiny isles in the Senkaku Straits or Diaoyu in the East China Sea. A history of conflict avoidance and joint development involving rival nations abound, perhaps as a result of intelligent, creative, humble, and pragmatic diplomacy. In the Norwegian Ekofisk oil field in the North Sea, which we visited when we were president of the Petroleum Association of the Philippines in the 1970s, the discovered oil in the sea goes even now to Norway and to Teeside, England and the natural gas goes to Germany. The oil in the Caspian Sea countries is shared by Iran, Russia, Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan and others, because among them, there is demarcation and practical mutual understanding and goodwill. The 2006 agreement between giant Australia and tiny East Timor share the hydrocarbons in the South Pacific in the waters just below Darwin and on the southeast side of Asia’s newest republic. The 1989 deal between Malaysia and Thailand enabled them to jointly develop their disputed waters in the Gulf of Thailand. The Guinea-Bissau and Senegal accord of 1993 helped the concerned countries develop their disputed areas. The border conflicts in Asia are more explosive, seemingly more intractable – between India and Pakistan over Kashmir, between India and China in their common mountainous region, between Azerbaijan and Armenia in Nagorno-Karabakh, among others. However, even as dangerous a dispute as one between Russia and China, which led the two countries involving hundreds of thousands of their troops poised to pounce on each other in the brink of war, did not explode into full-scale bloody confrontation because of prudence. The conflict was over a territory in the vicinity of the Ussuri (Wusuli) river in the eastern region of the then USSR, north of Vladivostok, in 1969. The surprise 1992 border agreement between China and Russia rapidly resolved their territorial dispute in the Argun and Amur rivers, where China was granted control over Tarabahov Island (Yinlong Island) and about 50 percent of Bolshoy Ussuriysky Island (Heixiazi Island) near Khabarovsk. Asia and the world must never forget one of the foremost leaders in Asian history, China’s “paramount leader” Deng Xiaoping and its President Yang Shangkun and the USSR’s President Boris Yeltsin for the classic Border Agreement between China and Russia that resolved what could have been an explosive and ruinous conflict between the two major powers, with Russia still supported by its satellite states at the time and both already wielding powerful weapons. Indeed, the idea of “win-win cooperation,” of a pragmatic and intelligent sharing of areas and resources could help build a model for lessening tensions and solving conflicts, and avoiding the possibility of war in Asia’s manifold and dangerous flashpoints......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 29th, 2022

Oil price rollbacks not enough to brace drivers for soaring inflation — transport group

“Ever since the consecutive increase in the price of oil at the beginning of this year until Marcos Jr. took office, drivers and small operators still have no comfort.".....»»

Category: financeSource:  philstarRelated NewsOct 25th, 2022

P20 per kilo of rice possible under mega farm concept: DAR

MANILA - The Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) said bringing down the price of rice to around PHP20 per kilo is achievable through its mega farms project.In a press conference on Monday, DAR Secretary Bernie Cruz said the concept of the project is to consolidate small and individual farm l.....»»

Category: newsSource:  manilanewsRelated NewsJun 6th, 2022

Oil price hike, asahan na sa gitna ng Russian oil ban

MANILA, Philippines – Asahan na ang panibagong taas-presyo sa mga produktong petolyo sa mga susunod na linggo. Ayon sa Department of Energy, ito ay makaraang i-ban ng maraming bansa sa Europa ang langis mula sa Russia dahil sa patuloy na pananakop nito sa Ukraine. Dahil dito, posibleng sumipa nang husto ang presyo ng langis sa […] The post Oil price hike, asahan na sa gitna ng Russian oil ban appeared first on REMATE ONLINE......»»

Category: newsSource:  remateRelated NewsMay 31st, 2022

Russia recalls envoy after Biden says killer Putin will pay the price

Russia recalls envoy after Biden says killer Putin will pay the price.....»»

Category: newsSource:  thestandardRelated NewsMar 18th, 2021

Small investors lend gov’t P221B

Fetching a coupon rate of 2.375 percent, the IOU issue has notably lower price than last year’s RTB which gave a 4.375 percent annual interest The post Small investors lend gov’t P221B appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsFeb 9th, 2021

A small price to pay

Metro Manila mayors have recommended a ban on all holiday parties in the National Capital Region to prevent a resurgence of COVID-19 infections. They are also suggesting that the general community quarantine (GCQ) that is in effect in Metro Manila until Oct. 31 be extended to the end of the year......»»

Category: newsSource:  thestandardRelated NewsOct 22nd, 2020

Christmas 2020 for workers and farmers

HOTSPOT Tonyo Cruz Two things workers are looking forward to at the end of each year are the 13th month pay and the Christmas bonus. And it seems about two million workers may not get any 13th month pay at all, if the Duterte government would have its way. The reason? Because of the pandemic. In reaction, Kilusang Mayo Uno chairperson Elmer Labog  issued his shortest statement yet this year, unable to hide labor’s frustration: “It is the government’s responsibility to bail out MSMEs in times of emergencies.” Indeed, it is the state’s obligation to support and prop up micro, small and medium-scale enterprises especially now in the time of pandemic. By saying MSMEs could dispense with the 13th month pay, the government is practically passing on its responsibility to MSMEs. Workers continue to give their share through the cheap, underpaid and overstressed labor power that makes sure MSMEs continue to function and perform their role as main engines of the economy. The government must do its job: Bail out the MSMEs. It is quite surprising that the Duterte government seems disinterested in bailing out MSMEs, considering the avalanche of news about the borrowings here and there. According to Sonny Africa, executive director of the think-tank Ibon Foundation, the borrowings has reached a historic high: “It took 118 years for the country’s debt to reach P6.1-trillion in 2016. President Duterte is taking just six years to more than than double that to P13.7-trillion in 2022.” Again, the reason for the borrowing has been “because of the pandemic.” Regardless of where the money goes, and whether or not MSMEs and workers received only a drop from it, they would pay the entire debt through more and higher taxes for years to come. Workers are not asking for something they have not earned through hard work. They earned that 13th month pay. It is not an optional thing. It is part of the law. The pandemic should oblige the state to bail out our MSMEs to enable them to fully function, and to give the workers’ their due under the law. Workers have given and lost a lot because of the pandemic. Workers have not asked for free rides to work, but the government fails to provide adequate and safe mass transport. Workers have asked for free mass testing in their companies and communities, but the government has other ideas. Workers and their families would have fared better with unemployment benefits amid the dismal pandemic response of government, but it seems the same government wishes to push them instead to pawnshops and loan sharks. We haven’t even factored in the laid-off, underemployed and unemployed workers, as well as the undetermined number of overseas Filipino healthcare workers stranded in the country since April. They all don’t wish to be “patay-gutom” and “pala-asa”.  They don’t wish to stay unemployed and be dependent on aid. They are ready to work and earn their keep. But since the president made policy decisions affecting their ability to obtain work, it is the government’s obligation to bail them out as well. The situation of our nation’s farmers is no different. For instance, rice farmers continue to produce our national staple. The pandemic made even worse the effects on them of the combined power of policies such as rice tarrification, the stranglehold of Big Landlords, the vast influence of rice cartels, and the continued operation of illegal rice importers. Price monitoring by Bantay Bigas and the Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas reveals the outrageously low palay prices nationwide, which means ruin to our nation’s rice farmers: Negros Occidental and Bicol region P10; Capiz P10-P11; Caraga P11; Tarlac P11-12; Ilocos Sur and Nueva Ecija P11-13; Camarines Sur P11.50-14; Bulacan and Mindoro P12; Isabela P12-P13.50; Pangasinan P12-P12.30; Antique P12.50; Agusan del Sur P13; Davao de Oro P13.14; Davao del Norte, Surigao del Sur and South Cotabato P13.50; North Cotabato P14; and Lanao del Norte P15. If you look at it, plantitos and plantitas today pay 20 to 50 times more for ornamental plants, compared to the prices traders and the NFA offer to our farmers. According to Bantay Bigas and KMP, the government procures way less than 20 percent of the produce of rice farmers.  And then we hear that the NFA would rather import rice from other countries, at pandemic-affected prices at that. Without any state intervention, by way of NFA buying rice farmers’ produce at P20 per kilo, and providing loans to farmers, there could be worse rural poverty in the coming months and years. Between our workers and farmers, their families have been made to sacrifice a lot since March, with prices of basic goods spiking, with new and higher expenses arising from online classes for the children. There cannot be no aid for them.  Neither should workers and farmers shoulder the burden of the failure or refusal of government to provide funding for bailouts sorely needed by MSMEs, and be forced to accept new national debts to pay for policies such as rice tarrification and importation. The government knows the scale of the problem. The Department of Labor and Employment says 13,127 companies have either laid off workers or permanently closed. The response cannot be “pass the burden to workers”. The answer should be: “the state must do everything to rescue the companies and the workers.” OFWs across the world should be familiar with bailouts and economic protections because of the pandemic. Many countries that host OFWs enacted huge bailouts and stimulus to their economies, partly so that migrant labor could continue to be employed. They enjoy health insurance, and special COVID19 coverage. Governments handed out checks to both citizens and companies. Is it too much to ask that the same be done in our own country? Or do Filipinos have to go abroad to experience such social and economic protections?.....»»

Category: newsSource:  mb.com.phRelated NewsOct 9th, 2020

Thailand Moves a Step Closer to Welcoming Back Foreign Tourists

Thailand will start issuing special visas to foreign tourists starting October, easing a more than five-month-old ban on visitors to revive the nation’s ailing tourism-reliant economy. Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-Ocha’s cabinet approved a proposal to issue visas to tourists planning to stay between 90 and 280 days in Thailand, according to government spokeswoman Traisuree Taisaranakul. The tourists will undergo a mandatory 14-day state quarantine on arrival at partner hotels or hospitals and follow health and safety regulations, she said. The government expects about 1,200 visitors to avail themselves of these visas each month, generating about 1.2 billion baht ($38.5 million) in revenue. The easing of border restrictions may boost the nation’s pandemic-battered tourism industry and cushion the blow to an economy projected to contract 8.5% this year. The news of cabinet approval for special visas triggered a rally among hotel and travel operators in Bangkok. A measure of Thai tourism and leisure stocks jumped 4.5%, the biggest gainer among the Stock Exchange of Thailand’s 28 industry groups. It was also the index’s largest increase since May 26. While Hotel operators Erawan Group Pcl and Central Plaza Hotel Pcl surged more than 8%, Minor International Pcl advanced 5.5%. Thailand’s tourism and hospitality sectors are counting on the return of international visitors, who contributed to two-thirds of tourism income before the pandemic, to reverse the slump in businesses and save millions of jobs. A government campaign to boost travel by locals through hotel and air travel concessions has failed to make up for the slump in earnings, but the move to allow foreigners in small batches will still be a relief to the industry. “There will not be a huge economic impact from this as it still can’t compensate for the revenue lost, but it will help,” Somprawin Manprasert, chief economist at Bank of Ayudhya Pcl said. “This plan still targets a higher-spending group of foreign visitors which will not benefit tourism industry operators that have lower to mid-price points, who will still suffer.” The move to relax curbs on foreign tourists also follows Thailand’s relative success in containing the coronavirus outbreak. The nation went without a local transmission for 100 days before the virus-free run was ended early this month. Though Thailand was the first country outside China to report the deadly virus, its cumulative cases stand at 3,480 with most patients already discharged from hospitals. The reopening to foreign tourists may be risky, but it is a manageable risk worth taking, Bank of Thailand’s Senior Director Don Nakornthab wrote in an article on the central bank’s website. The country may be headed for a second straight year of contraction in 2021 if it continued to restrict foreign visitor arrivals, Don wrote......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsSep 15th, 2020

PBA: Kiefer already high on coach Yeng s player list

Coach Yeng Guiao hasn't even gotten to coach Kiefer Ravena for a full PBA season, and yet, the Phenom is already high on the champion mentor's list. Guiao is pretty sold on Kiefer, saying that his NLEX Road Warriors were lucky to draft Ravena no. 2 in the 2017 PBA Draft. Coach Yeng says that NLEX is also lucky now that Kiefer is back after the guard had to go through his 18-month FIBA suspension. "We were very lucky to have Kiefer, even if the price was not having him for a year and half," Guiao said on Coaches Unfiltered. "We've waited a long time for him and he also wants to show what he can do," he added. For Guiao, Kiefer possesses rare leadership qualities for a player. True enough, as a rookie, Ravena drove the Road Warriors all the way to the 2018 Philippine Cup semifinals. In his first full conference back from suspension, his second overall in the PBA, he had NLEX as the no. 1 seed in the 2019 Governors' Cup. "Kiefer is a natural leader," Guiao said. "Just his leadership qualities, his ability to think through a game, the way he's able to gain the respect of his teammates, those are qualities that are very rare when you combine them in one person," coach Yeng added. Of course, Kiefer is no slouch on the basketball court. He's one of the most gifted young stars in the PBA today and while his sample size of success in the pros is relatively small so far, there's no mistaking about his abilities. Ravena shining on a loaded NLEX backcourt says a lot about his abilities as well. "The good thing about Kiefer is he does not need to dominate the ball, not like when he was in college. I think one strong reason why we have a better team now is because he does not have to carry the load by himself, especially at the guard position," coach Yeng said. "I would rank him very high," Guiao added.   — Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 23rd, 2020

Explainer: Putin Says Russia Has A COVID-19 Vaccine. Doubts Abound.

MOSCOW -- Russia has become the first country to issue regulatory approval for a vaccine against COVID-19 and plans to launch a mass immunization program in October. Announcing the news in.....»»

Category: newsSource:  philippinetimesRelated NewsAug 13th, 2020

Small fuel price cuts set this week

Minimal price cuts on gasoline products are seen this week with Unioil Philippines warning motorists to expect mixed adjustments......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsJul 20th, 2020

Oil price cuts seen next week  

Pump prices are expected to go down significantly next week following a series of price hikes......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsFeb 4th, 2023

Food security in the highlands of Kalinga

If there’s one crucial thing that we can learn about this onion fiasco or the unprecedented price hike for almost every food we buy, that is self-sufficiency......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsFeb 4th, 2023

School suicides

Some 404 basic education students, according to Department of Education (DepEd) figures, committed suicide in academic year 2021-2022. That figure is not small, considering that 2,147 students in the same period did not succeed in doing so. For DepEd, these are mere statistics, not young lives entrusted to them. If DepEd cared and monitored, comparative […] The post School suicides appeared first on Cebu Daily News......»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsFeb 3rd, 2023

Price of cooking gas up by over P120 per tank

MANILA, Philippines — Just a day after prices of gasoline and other petroleum products were raised on Tuesday, consumers were greeted with a big increase of more than P120 in the cost of an 11-kilogram tank of cooking gas. Petron Corp. and Phoenix LPG Philippines Inc. jacked up their prices by P11.20 per kg, or […] The post Price of cooking gas up by over P120 per tank appeared first on Cebu Daily News......»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsFeb 2nd, 2023

NCR retail price growth steady at 6% in December

Retail prices of goods in Metro Manila sustained its pace of growth in December from the previous month, according to the Philippine Statistics Authority......»»

Category: financeSource:  philstarRelated NewsFeb 2nd, 2023

Entrepreneur mentorship program to be rolled out in ASEAN – Concepcion

An entrepreneur mentorship program targeting millions of micro, small and medium enterprises in Southeast Asia is set to be rolled out this month, according to Go Negosyo founder Joey Concepcion......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsFeb 1st, 2023

Filipino, Malaysian vessels seized for fuel smuggling

A Malaysian cargo vessel and a fuel tanker based in Navotas, Metro Manila have been seized for allegedly attempting to smuggle P29.6 million worth of fuel in the waters off Tawi-Tawi......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsJan 31st, 2023