Category Archives: Business

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

Duterte Reverses Mining Stance Yet Again; Mining Firms Warned of Higher Taxes

President Rodrigo Duterte’s mining stance has changed once again after he said he would tap Gina Lopez in the creation of new regulations for the sector. He also declared during his State of the Nation Address that environmental protection should take precedence over economic benefits of extraction, a reversal of his earlier order to current Environment Secretary Roy Cimatu to respect extraction agreements. He warned mining firms of higher taxes if they would not pay for the complete rehabilitation of affected… Continue reading

San Miguel’s Ramon Ang to Buy Philippine Daily Inquirer

The Philippine Daily Inquirer, the country’s largest paper and a foremost critic of President Rodrigo Duterte, will be sold to Ramon Ang, the head of San Miguel Corporation and a presidential ally. While the official reason is that the paper is facing challenges financially because of digital media, its owners, the Prieto family, are facing pressure over a key property in the business district that Duterte insists should be… Continue reading

New Energy Contracting Round Slated for December

The Department of Energy will launch a new contracting round for coal and petroleum contracts in December. This will be the sixth Philippine Energy Contracting Round (PECR). Areas have yet to be finalized, but should include those in the South China Sea, Sulu Sea, and around Palawan province. However, contracts located in South China Sea will need clearance from the Department of Foreign Affairs due to the territorial dispute… Continue reading

Foreign Ownership Limit in Finance, Media, Education to be Increased to 70%

Economic officials plan to liberalize the foreign ownership limit rule in several industries where the move can be done through administrative orders. These include finance, mass media, education, and practice of licensed professionals. Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Ernesto Pernia added that they are backing a bill in Congress that seeks to amend the Public Services Act. The bill, if passed, would allow the opening up of the telecommunications, power, transport, and water sectors to up to 70% foreign… Continue reading

DOE Reviewing Proposals for Liquefied Natural Gas Hub

The Department of Energy (DOE) said that it is evaluating five government-to-government proposals for the development of a liquefied natural gas hub in the country. The agency said it received 27 such proposals, but it is initially reviewing the ones from China, Japan, Korea, Russia, and Indonesia. Private partners will also be sought to provide technical, trading, and management expertise. It set an ambitious launch date… Continue reading