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Low Interest Rate, Tax Reform to Attract More ‘Hot Money’ to PH

The Philippines’ low interest rate environment and the continued approval of tax reform measures are seen to address the outflows in the country’s foreign portfolio investments, an economist of Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. (RCBC) said on Friday. Data released by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) on Thursday showed that registered foreign portfolio investments, otherwise […].....»»

Category: newsSource: metrocebu metrocebuSep 26th, 2020

Rice farmers seek bigger financial aid

The one-time financial assistance that the Senate directed the Department of Agriculture (DA) to provide to rice farmers amid the declining prices of palay would not be enough, a group of rice farmers said. (MB file, Keith Bacongco) Federation of Free Farmers (FFF) National Manager Raul Montemayor said rice farmers have lost an average of P10,000 per hectare in the ongoing cropping season due to severely depressed palay prices.   This was his response to the joint resolution recently passed by the Senate Committees on Agriculture and Agrarian Reform, which ordered the DA to appropriate some P3 billion in tariffs from rice imports through the 2021 national budget for cash aid to rice farmers. Under the Rice Tariffication Law (RTL), which allowed unlimited rice importation in the Philippines, tariff collections in excess of P10 billion per year can be used for additional support to farmers, including cash transfers. FFF, however, noted that the proposed appropriation would only provide P5,000 per farmer if distributed to some 600,000 farmers tilling one hectare or less.   If the actual number of qualified farmers is raised to 1.1 million, the subsidy would only amount to about P2,700 per farmer. Either proposal will be unfair to equally affected rice farmers tilling larger areas, the farmers’ group said.   Instead, Montemayor said the government could keep palay prices stable by temporarily imposing safeguard duties or additional tariffs on imported rice. “The government allowed unlimited rice imports, resulting in low palay prices.  Now, it will spend P3 billion to partially offset farmers’ losses. If it had instead imposed additional duties on imports, palay prices would not have dropped too much, there would have been no need for cash aid to farmers, and the government might have even earned extra revenues from the safeguard duties,” said Montemayor. Under the Section 10 of RTL or Republic Act (RA) 11203, in order to protect the Philippine rice industry from sudden or extreme price fluctuations, a special safeguard duty on rice shall be imposed in accordance with Safeguard Measures Act.   R.A. 8800 or the Safeguard Measures Act, on the other hand, allows additional safeguard duties on top of regular tariffs in case an import surge is shown to be harmful to local farmers.   “Safeguard duties will not be inflationary as claimed by the DA, because they will be applied only when there is already a proven oversupply in the market.  They can be removed once the situation stabilizes,” said Montemayor. Agriculture Secretary William Dar is not keen on slapping additional tariff on rice imports, and has repeatedly appealed for public understanding about the “short-term” effects of RTL to palay prices. However, he promised to look for other solutions to the plea of the farmers like asking the National Food Authority (NFA), which buys palay at P19 per kilogram (/kg) to boost the government’s buffer stock, to intensify its palay procurement.   Instead of cash aid, the FFF proposed that existing funds from the Rice Competitiveness Enhancement Fund (RCEF) and extra tariff collections be re-focused to address current problems of farmers.   It noted that half of farmers receiving free seeds under the RCEF had already been using certified seeds in the past, and that many were seeking other types of support that were not available under RCEF.   Numerous farmers have also questioned the DA’s promotion of seed varieties like NSIC Rc222, which is of poor quality and are being shunned by traders. “Also, the P5 billion annual fund for mechanization is not moving well, and it might be more practical at this time to preserve job opportunities for farm laborers instead of displacing them with machines,” Montemayor said.   “Moreover, the P1 billion budget for extension and training could be realigned, considering that farmers cannot attend training activities due to COVID-related restrictions. The P1 billion for credit could be better used for interest rate subsidies or loan guarantee programs, instead of direct loans which will benefit only 20,000 farmers,” he added......»»

Category: lifestyleSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 19th, 2020

Money supply growth slows for first time in 6 months —BSP

Despite last year's reductions in bank reserves and interest rate, money supply growth slowed in February due to low government spending......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsApr 27th, 2020

Ceferin stresses big clubs with closed Champions League idea

By Rob Harris, Associated Press UEFA President Aleksander Ceferin told leaders from European leagues not to forget the importance of big clubs in generating cash during a private meeting in which plans were detailed for a closed-off Champions League favoring the elite. A recording and images obtained by The Associated Press from the meeting at the UEFA headquarters on Wednesday highlights the schism between clubs and leagues over the ability to influence UEFA as it considers revamping its club competitions starting with the 2024-25 season. The dramatic proposal, shown during the meeting in Nyon, would lock in 24 of the 32 slots in the Champions League without the need to qualify annually through domestic leagues and would introduce promotion from and relegation to the Europa League. The plan has infuriated domestic leagues, particularly La Liga President Javier Tebas, who views UEFA as too closely aligned to the vision of European Club Association head Andrea Agnelli of Juventus. In a letter obtained by the AP last month, European Leagues President Lars-Christer Olsson floated the possibility of an investigation to determine whether the ECA was abusing a dominant position as UEFA was lobbied for more games between leading clubs. "Speaking about big clubs, this is a typical populist tool that is used in Europe not only in football," Ceferin told European Leagues representatives in the closed-doors meeting. "More and more the rich are taking everything from you and we the rich will help. Is that logical? I don't think so. And it's true big clubs are taking a lot of money, the most the biggest amount of money because of their results. And it's true that we have to think about that. But they're also bringing a lot of money on the table which is very easily forgotten." Hitting out at claims he is "killing football," Ceferin rebuked members of the European Leagues organization over public criticism and warned his executive committee could have pushed ahead with a revamp of competitions without discussing it with them. "We will not insult, but the more shouting there will be, the less consultation process there will be," Ceferin said. "Shouting in the media tells us much more about those people than about UEFA," Ceferin added. "We were listening about what will happen here, about how we are killing football, destroying football — despite the fact that UEFA is the only organization in European football that shares money as solidarity to every single country in Europe." The early UEFA vision, if approved, would see the Champions League group stage start a month earlier in August and double the size of each group to eight teams. But 24 of the 32 clubs in the 2024-25 group stage could retain their places the following season regardless of their domestic league finish. That would give certainty to leading clubs that attract the biggest television audiences but reduced opportunities for outsiders. Four Champions League teams will be relegated each season into the next season's second-tier Europa League. They would be replaced by the Europa League semifinalists, who would be promoted. Only four qualifying places would be left for national champions competing in preliminary rounds. It would leave the Dutch league runner-up — as Ajax was before reaching the Champions League semifinals this season — with no ability to qualify. Promotion and relegation is also envisaged between the Europa League and a third-tier competition that has yet to launch. The third competition, first revealed by the AP in 2015, would kick off in the 2021-22 season with a 32-team format in eight groups of four. But it could be enlarged to 64 teams from 2024, with four groups of 16 teams, possibly arranged by region, according to the UEFA documents. "You have to know that the ones who are shouting generate huge revenues and don't share anything with the others in Europe," Ceferin said. "The ones who really have problems respectfully and humbly wait for our explanation. And that's why we want to discuss we want to discuss because of the ones who deserve. That we discuss the ones who need our help and not the ones who are scared about their personal interest." In 2016, Ceferin decried a secret deal over Champions League changes agreed just before he was elected to succeed Michel Platini as UEFA president. Ceferin was frustrated UEFA caved into demands of Spain, Germany, England and Italy to guarantee them 16 of the 32 Champions League group-stage places. Now Ceferin is giving the impression he is consulting more by bringing leagues and clubs to meetings in Nyon. But his unhappiness with officials from leagues was clear in the tone. "We can go to the ExCo and decide and not ask anyone and your representative in the ExCo go can vote against," Ceferin said, referring to Olsson, who sits on the executive committee. "But we don't want to do it. That's why we are discussing. Legal action threats, I will not comment that much. As a lawyer with 25 year experience, this is quite the joke." Ceferin called on European Leagues officials to approach the talks "with some class without hostility and without false solidarity" and challenged them to come forward with proposals. "I hope we will exchange many important ideas and arguments," Ceferin said. "And if we do that we will come at the end to a solution that will be good for all the European football and — trust me or don't trust me — but the fact is that for UEFA that's our goal. We cannot do what clubs say and we cannot do what league say. We will do what is right for European football. And we will protect it together.".....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMay 11th, 2019

BSP mulls interest rate cap on other loans

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas is studying the possibility of imposing a ceiling on interest rates for other types of loans to ease the burden of consumers amid the COVID-19 pandemic......»»

Category: financeSource:  philstarRelated NewsOct 23rd, 2020

DFP employees turn the table, file graft raps vs Belgica

Presidential Anti-Corruption Commission (PACC) Commissioner Greco Belgica has been slapped with a complaint for graft and several administrative charges before the Office of the Ombudsman by nine employees of Duty Free Philippines (DFP). Presidential Anti-Corruption Commission (PACC) Commissioner Greco Belgica Alexander Sablan, Ernesto Mangalindan, Romeo Silva Jr., Eric Oracion, Rizalino Santos, Nilo Duarte, Joaquin Vibal, Francis Daco, and Carlito Ardales want Belgica to be held liable for violations of  Section 3(b), (e), (f), and (k) of R.A. 3019 or the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act, Grave Misconduct, Conduct Prejudicial to the Service, and Gross Inexcusable Negligence. The DFP employees said they were “very frustrated and disappointed” in Belgica for taking on their case of “smuggling” against DFPC Chief Operating Officer (COO) Vicente Pelagio Angala. They said in the complaint that they sought Belgica’s help after listening to his program with DZRH called “Ireklamo Mo Kay Greco.” They then went to his house in San Miguel Avenue near Malacañang and sought help regarding allegations of anomalies and corruption within DFP. He listened to their concerns and introduced his father, Gregor Belgica, and his lawyer sibling, Atty. Jeremia Belgica. The Belgica clan assured the DFP employees that they have their support, and they said they were lucky because they do not have to pay for any legal fees. However, when they filed the plunder complaint before the Ombudsman on March 16, 2017, with the help of the firm of Belgica’s brother – Belgica Aranas ALim Dela Cruz and Association – they had to pay P1,000 per page or a total of P130,000. Things went downhill when Belgica contacted Angala and set up a meeting with them. During the meeting, they were made to sign a “waiver” which they did not get to read and they were also kept in the dark. In the end, Belgica made recommendations to President Duterte against officials of DFP. However, they said the recommendations did not really include the names of those involved, but just mentioned that charges be filed against “public officials.” The money which they used to pay the Ombudsman was also returned. “Ginamit niya ang aming kaso para magkaroon ng koneksyon sa mga malalaking negosyante sa Duty Free upang gamitin niya sa kanyang pansariling interest. (He used our case to connect with big business owners in Duty Free so that he could use it for his own personal gain),” the complaint read. Contacted by the Manila Bulletin for his side, Belgica said he is ready to defend himself and provide answers “anywhere and anytime.” He added that the complaint that he asked for money is a “fabricated story,” and he said that he had been very generous to the DFP employees. The fact that the group has besmirched his reputation, Belgica said he is going to file counter-charges and “pray hard that they all go to jail.” Belgica likewise made some accusations of his own: “This group is being sponsored by the same people who also filed a case against me on the entrapment operations and anti-corruption initiatives that we have been doing. This group has been trying to rally more people to fabricate cases and allegations in order to undermine the anti-corruption initiatives of the administration.”.....»»

Category: newsSource:  mb.com.phRelated NewsOct 22nd, 2020

COA questions ‘validity and propriety’ of Land Titling Computerization Project

The Commission on Audit has questioned the “validity and propriety” of the Land Titling Computerization Project (LTCP) of the Land Registration Authority (LRA)that lacked approval of the President and allegedly deprived the government an estimated P3.12 billion in possible income. COA has questioned the  Build-Own-Operate Agreement  (BOO) for the implementation of the LTCP that has so far earned for the private partner of the LRA some P21 billion in just 10 years. The audit agency’s observations are contained in the recently-released  2019 LRA annual audit report submitted to LRA Administrator Renato Bermejo by COA Director Michael Bacani. The LTCP introduced the automation of the functions and processes and standardization of the registration procedure for land registration in the country. COA said the BOO between the LRA and the Land Registration Systems Inc. (LARES) lacked the mandatory approval of the President as required under Republic Act 77198. “Other necessary documentary requirements were likewise not submitted to the Office of the Auditor, thus, validity and propriety of both the BOO and the corresponding IT service fees collected and released by LRA to Lares, Inc. amounting to more or less P20 billioin out of the P21 billion, as doubtful,” COA stated. The BOO was originally entered into by LRA with the Stradec FF Cruz and CONFAC (SUFC) Consortium, now LARES), in 2000 for the implementation of the agency’s Information Technology Network and Database Infrastructure Project. In a special audit on the contract that was conducted by COA from 2004 to 2005, the audit agency concluded that the LTCP “was not efficiently and effectively implemented and the interest of the government and the public was not adequately protected” due to the delay in its implementation. In the 2015 annual audit report, COA observed that various documents covering the BOO were not certified true copies, including the presidential approval of the agreement through then Executive Secretary Ronaldo Zamora. In 2019, COA sought confirmation of the presidential imprimatur of the agreement but Malacanang was not “able to provide positive confirmation on the authenticity of the presidential approval dated July 31, 2000” that was ostensibly signed by Zamora. Originally costing just P3.483 billion, the project was able to earn P21 billion, P20 billion of which was released to LARES. The LRA management took exception to COA’s doubts on the validity and propriety of the BOO agreement is”without factual and legal basis”. Officials of the agency also pointed out that all BOO Contracts are presented to the president through the National Economic Development Authority. “Since the President chairs the NEDA Board, NEDA Board approval already carries with it the president’s approval,” the LRA argued. In the same audit report, COA disclosed that the LRA has failed to incorporate amendments to the agreement with LARES for the provisions of reasonable rate of return (ROI) to ensure that “no unwarranted benefit is given to the LARES” at the expense of the public.” “Likewise the absence of a revenue sharing arrangement deprived Government of more or less P3.12 billion of possible income,” the state audit agency noted. Audit examiners stressed that LRA has continuously failed to assess the “extent of recoupment of the investment” relative to the total IT services fee imposed and collected.  They said this is”detrimental to the paying public which the government ought to protect.” COA also assailed LRA for allowing the use of 12 “outdated” network switches, “causing security vulnerability and possible performance defect due to bugs.” Further, only two out of 10 software licenses were used for the project. Among the outdated software installed was the Kaspersky Security version 10.0.0.485......»»

Category: lifestyleSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 18th, 2020

‘Rate, RRR cuts no longer effective to stoke demand’

The additional interest rate cuts and further lowering of banks’ reserve requirement ratios by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas are no longer effective in stoking demand amid the COVID-19 pandemic, according to British banking giant HSBC......»»

Category: financeSource:  philstarRelated NewsSep 30th, 2020

Commercial banks support BSP order to cap credit cards& rsquo; interest rate at 24%

Major banks supported order of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas to put a 24-percent cap on annual interest rate of credit card transactions beginning Nov. 3, saying it will lessen the burden experienced by individuals and businesses during the pandemic......»»

Category: financeSource:  thestandardRelated NewsSep 26th, 2020

Philippines left out of foreign investor return to East Asian bonds

“Investors reduced their risk exposure during the quarter, leading to continued fund outflows against the backdrop of rising uncertainty from the pandemic and a low-interest-rate environment…,” ADB explained......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsSep 25th, 2020

BSP caps annual interest rate of credit cards at 25%

The Monetary Board, the policy-making body of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, approved an annual interest rate ceiling of 24 percent on all credit card transactions effective Nov. 3 this year......»»

Category: lifestyleSource:  abscbnRelated NewsSep 24th, 2020

SMIC pegs interest rate of P10-billion bonds at 3.3613% a year

Conglomerate SM Investments Corp. said Friday it set the interest rate for its 3.5-year P10-billion fixed-rate bond offering at 3.3613 percent per annum......»»

Category: financeSource:  thestandardRelated NewsSep 18th, 2020

Fed seeks to offer reassurance amid stimulus package

Washington—Armed with a new interest rate strategy, the Federal Reserve will seek to reassure the US economy rattled by the coronavirus downturn as it wraps up its policy meeting on Wednesday......»»

Category: financeSource:  thestandardRelated NewsSep 16th, 2020

57 persons probed in Wirecard mess

The Anti-Money Laundering Council said Friday it is investigating 57 persons of interest who were possibly involved in the Wirecard controversy that stirred the domestic financial system recently......»»

Category: financeSource:  thestandardRelated NewsSep 11th, 2020

How To Save Money During This Pandemic

2020 is continuing to be a very rough year for everyone, with the COVID-19 pandemic alone immensely affecting many aspects of our lives, especially finances. A great number of workers have been unemployed since the pandemic started where in July 2020, the unemployment rate of the Philippines hit 45.5% where almost half of the Philippines’ […].....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsSep 10th, 2020

DOF seeks swift passage of 2021 budget, economic measures

The Department of Finance (DOF) has sought the swift enactment by Congress of the proposed national budget for next year along with the economic priority measures to rebuild the economy and decisively defeat coronavirus. Finance Secretary Carlos G. Dominguez III ( MB FILE, Albert Garcia) During a briefing for the Senate finance committee, Finance Secretary Carlos G. Dominguez III said the timely enactment of the P4.506 trillion 2021 national budget is a key component of the government’s comprehensive program under its economic bounce-back plan. On top of the budget, Dominguez also said that a “timely and decisive” passage of several economic priority measures are needed to accelerate economic recovery. The priority measures, now pending in Congress, include the Financial Institutions’ Strategic Transfer (FIST) Act, and the Government Financial Institutions’  Unified Initiatives to Distressed Enterprises for Economic Recovery (GUIDE) bill. FIST allows banks to dispose of bad loans and non-performing assets through asset management companies, while GUIDE seeks to allow state-run banks to form a special holding company that will infuse equity, with strict conditions, into strategically important companies facing insolvency.  Likewise, the finance chief urged the Senate to pass the proposed Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises Act (CREATE), which will  immediately lower the corporate income tax (CIT) rate from 30 percent to 25 percent. “The swift enactment of CREATE, FIST, GUIDE and the 2021 budget will serve to accelerate our economic recovery. We should not delay providing urgent and necessary relief to our people,” Dominguez said during the Development Budget Coordination Committee (DBCC) briefing. The DBCC is composed of the heads of the Department of Budget and Management (DBM), DOF, National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA), Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP); and a senior representative from the Office of the President (OP). “We are committed to working closely with you on the recovery measures so that these can be enacted in a timely, decisive, and responsible manner,” Dominguez told members of the panel chaired by Senator Juan Edgardo Angara. He said the Duterte administration will continue to work with the legislature in passing the remaining packages of the comprehensive tax reform program (CTRP) that will, among others, institute reforms in property valuation and in the taxation of the financial sector. Dominguez said economic recovery also rests on sustaining President Duterte’s signature program “Build, Build, Build,” as sound infrastructure investments provide the largest multiplier effect on the economy in the form of more jobs creation,  increased consumption, and the generation of additional productive activities......»»

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

CCAP opposes cap on finance charges

A proposal to impose a cap on finance charges, if applied to all types of interest rates, may kill the credit card industry at a time when the default rate is expected to double due to the impact of the pandemic, according to the Credit Card Association of the Philippines......»»

Category: financeSource:  philstarRelated NewsAug 25th, 2020

SRA eases lending for sugar farmers

The Sugar Regulatory Administration plans to cut the interest rate of the credit program under the Sugarcane Industry Development Act to help farmers improve productivity as the law’s P2-billion budget has been reduced in the last four years......»»

Category: financeSource:  philstarRelated NewsAug 21st, 2020

PSC vows no job layoffs despite financial woes amid pandemic

While unemployment has risen to an alarming rate amid the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, the Philippine Sports Commission assured its employees that there will no layoffs in the agency. Appearing on Tuesday’s online session of the Philippine Sportswriters Association (PSA) Forum, chairman William ‘Butch’ Ramirez said that despite a meager budget with nothing more to spare, the PSC will continue to carry out its day-to-day operations. Even under these very difficult times, the PSC puts priority on the welfare of its workers Ramirez stressed.   “Even before COVID, we have communicated with Malacanang that we will let go of some contractual employees,” said Ramirez, adding that it would have taken effect on Aug. 31. But the global pandemic made the PSC change its mind. “We in the PSC board made a collective decision that it will not happen. We will not remove anyone from the PSC unless there is cause. We are in very difficult times,” said Ramirez. The PSC has 250 regular employees and more than 250 contractuals. “Sa kahirapan ngayon, ano ang kakainin nila?” said Ramirez, currently staying with his wife at the athletes’ quarters at the PhilSports Complex (formerly ULTRA) in Pasig City. The agency months ago implemented belt-tightening measures, including a 50 percent ‘equity reduction’ on the allowances of the national athletes and coaches. But despite the financial difficulties, athletes and coaches continue to receive their allowances, and can expect to get their regular stipends once the situation improves or when the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR) resumes its monthly remittances of close to P100 million to the PSC. Ramirez also added government sports agency is thinking beyond sports, and talked about “fortitude and sacrifice" during the Forum presented by San Miguel Corp., Go For Gold, Milo, PAGCOR, Amelie Hotel Manila, Braska Restaurant, and powered by Smart, with Upstream Media as official webcast partner. At the height of the lockdown, the national government channeled P1 billion of PSC money for COVID-19 purposes. The PSC has also allowed the use of its facilities like the Rizal Coliseum and Ninoy Aquino Stadium in the fight against the deadly virus. The PSC has also donated 350 beds and close to 500 laptops that were used during last year’s Southeast East Asian Games to various government offices during the pandemic. “The PSC is not only focused on sports now. We are adapting to the new environment,” said Ramirez......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 18th, 2020

OFWs demand scrapping of PhilHealth amid latest scandal

"The widespread corruption in the government is the reason why OFWs are strongly against the planned mandatory PhilHealth and premium rate hike. OFWs cannot entrust the government that their hard-earned money will benefit their families and the rest of the Filipino people." The post OFWs demand scrapping of PhilHealth amid latest scandal appeared first on Bulatlat......»»

Category: newsSource:  bulatlatRelated NewsAug 14th, 2020

Is Bitcoin mining worth or not?

Although everyone can mine at home, it is unlikely that they will be able to return the money invested. To verify this, it is enough to compare the hash rate of your farm with the energy consumed and with the current bitcoin price in the world market. When it comes to the ultimate price of […] The post Is Bitcoin mining worth or not? appeared first on Kagay An......»»

Category: newsSource:  kagay_anRelated NewsAug 7th, 2020