Category Archives: Business Environment

Mines and Geosciences Bureau Recommends Lifting of Ban on Open-Pit Mining

The Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB) has recommended to Environment Secretary Roy Cimatu the lifting of the ban on open-pit mining. The agency said that it is an internationally accepted mining method, with even Duterte himself telling industry executives and officials that the law allows this practice. The issue will likely be taken up during the next meeting of the Mining Industry Coordinating Council (MICC), which is… Continue reading

Finance Chief Warns Rejection of Tax Reform Proposals to Affect Infrastructure Buildup

Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez has upped the pressure on the Senate to approve the administration’s tax reform program by saying that the government will not be able to fund half the infrastructure spending planned until 2022 if the proposals are rejected or considerably watered-down. He added that Congress should likewise pass succeeding tax reform packages, as revenues from the first package currently under Senate review… Continue reading

BSP Maintains Interest Rates

The Bangko Sentra ng Pilipinas (BSP, Philippine central bank) maintained the interest rate on overnight reverse repurchase facility at three percent, as well as the corresponding interest rates on the overnight lending and deposit facilities. Reserve requirement ratio was also left unchanged at 20 percent. The BSP has not changed the… Continue reading

Finance Department Offers Compromise with Senate over Tax Reform Measures

Senate Ways and Means Committee chair Juan Angara said that the Department of Finance is open to tweaking its tax reform proposal package. He revealed that Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez was willing to drop the proposed tax on sugar-sweetened beverages in return for the full passage of the fuel excise tax. It isn’t clear yet if Dominguez wanted the senate to approve a one-time hike as originally proposed or a… Continue reading

Foreign Investors Reminded to Register with Central Bank

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP, Philippine central bank) reminded investors that they have less than a month to register unregistered foreign direct investments (FDI) as the one-year grace period is set to lapse on Sept.1. The registration, however, is required only if the foreign exchange for repatriation of capital and remittance of earnings would be sourced from authorized agent banks or their affiliate foreign exchange corporations… Continue reading

Fiscal Rationalization Scares Away Japanese Investors

Concerns regarding the administration’s planned fiscal rationalization program have led to a decline in Japanese investments in the country. After registering a 52.1% increase last year, investments are down by 56.6% in the first five months of the year, weighed down by possible changes in incentives given by the Philippine Economic Zone Authority. President Rodrigo Duterte’s policy shift to China and Russia may have also contributed to the sharp fall. Trade officials, however, remain confident that the… Continue reading

MICC to Push Through with Review of Mining Closure and Suspension Orders

The Mining Industry Coordination Council (MICC) will finally push through with its review of the closure and suspension orders handed down by Gina Lopez on mining firms. The review was indefinitely postponed after the Commission on Appointments rejected Lopez as environment secretary. Along with President Rodrigo Duterte’s then-favorable stance, the review did not seem necessary anymore though the official reason… Continue reading