Three Maute Group Members Nabbed in Iloilo

Fears that the Maute Group is spreading its terror reach from the southern part of the country heightened after three of its members were caught in the Visayas province of Iloilo in central Philippines. The three were said to be on their way up north to Manila. Islamic militancy has largely been limited to Mindanao, but it has recently reached even the tourist province of Bohol, as well as Manila where the terror group claimed creditContinue reading

TradeNet Platform to Reduce Processing Time for Trade Permits

The government will pilot test next month the TradeNet platform, which seeks to modernize and hasten the processing of import and export permits. The online platform will connect 66 agencies and 10 economic zones involved in regulating trade. If successful, it will be fully implemented in September and connected to the ASEAN window by December. The eventual target is to reduce processing time to one hour from… Continue reading

Duterte to Heed Any Supreme Court Decision, but will not Hesitate to Re-impose Martial Law if Needed

President Rodrigo Duterte said that, while he would heed a contrary decision by the Supreme Court, he still would not hesitate to re-impose martial law if the situation in Marawi were not to improve. He further warned that a second declaration would likely be a Marcos-style martial law, though he did not expound on what it meant. Critics are sensitive on the topic because of the human rights abuses that occurred during the… Continue reading

Foreign Portfolio Investments Post $24.35-Million Net Outflow in May

Foreign portfolio investments posted a net outflow of $24.35 million in May, reversing April’s $51.39 million and the $72.81 million net inflows in the same period last year. This was attributed to investor reaction to weak first-quarter earnings of some corporations and lower-than-expected GDP. From January to May, the country already recorded a net outflow of $540.39 in hot money, a reversal of last year’s $129.07 million… Continue reading

First Quarter Foreign Direct Investments Up 16.6%; Pledges Fall 12.8%

Foreign direct investment (FDI) commitments registered with the country’s investment promotion agencies fell 12.8% to P22.883 billion in the first quarter from P26.243 billion approved in the same period last year.  Actual FDI that  came in, which is tracked separately by the central bank, climbed 16.6% to $1.56 billion from the $1.337 billion that entered in 2016’s comparable three months. The increase has been attributed to the… Continue reading

April Remittances Down to $2.08 Billion

Remittances fell to a 15-month low of $2.08 billion in April partly due to a stronger US dollar and a decline in remittances from land-based workers. This is lower by 5.9% when compared to the same month last year. This is also the lowest since January 2016’s $1.997 billion. For the year, remittances are up by 4.2 percent to $9.04 billion, the first time it has breached the $9-billion mark during the first four months. The Bangko Sentral ng… Continue reading

Angara Nixes Lower House’s Sugary Tax Proposal

Senate Ways and Means Committee chairman Sen. Juan Edgardo Angara said that he would forward a different proposal to the HoR-approved bill on sugar sweetened beverages. The HoR version sought to impose a two-tier system that would charge excise taxes of P10 for beverages that use local sugar and P20 for internationally produced beverages. Angara, however, got support from the Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade, and Finance about the WTO-complications, impracticality, and ineffectiveness of the… Continue reading