• By Alyssa Nicole O. Tan, November 30, 2021; Business World https://www.bworldonline.com/bill-extending-validity-of-2021-budget-funds-introduced-in-senate/ A bill extending the availability of the 2021 budget appropriations until the end of next year was filed in the Senate after the House approved a counterpart measure on third reading Monday. Senator Maria Imelda Josefa R. Marcos filed Senate Bill 2452, which amends Section 62 of the general provisions of Republic Act 11518 or the General Appropriations Act (GAA) of Fiscal Year 2021. The extension was intended to provide more time to implement projects and programs as the coronavirus pandemic has “drastically affected businesses and employment,” delaying planned Read More…

  • By Judy Quiros, November 29, 2021; Philippine News Agency https://www.pna.gov.ph/articles/1161313 Davao City – The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) said out-of-school youths will greatly benefit from the Philippine Identification System (PhilSys) in order for them to have a chance to enroll again in the future or apply for scholarships. In a recent post, the PSA said there are about 7 million out-of-school youths in the country, majority of whom have no valid ID or documents. Now that the PhilSys is on full gear, they have a chance to avail of the Philippine Identification (PhilID) card or the national ID, which must Read More…

  • By Jovee Marie de la Cruz, November 29, 2021; Business Mirror https://businessmirror.com.ph/2021/11/29/house-approves-hike-in-lgu-share-in-ira-to-50/ The House of Representatives on Monday approved the bill increasing the Internal Revenue Allotment (IRA) share of the local government units from 40 percent to 50 percent. Voting 175 affirmative and 0 abstention, lawmakers approved on third and final reading HB 10296 to intensify local government participation in national development by increasing the share of local government units in national taxes. After the third reading approval, the lower chamber immediately transmitted the bill to the upper chamber for its own deliberations and approval. The bill seeks to increase Read More…

  • By Azer Parrocha, November 23, 2021; Philippine News Agency https://www.pna.gov.ph/articles/1160613 Manila – Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea has signed a memorandum order directing the submission of a Citizen’s Charter and compliance with the automation of business permitting and licensing system (PBLS). Memorandum Order (MO) No. 57, signed by Medialdea on Nov. 22, covers the executive departments, agencies, and instrumentalities of the national government. “All covered entities which have not submitted their respective Citizen’s Charters since the enactment of RA No. 11032 are directed to submit the same with the corresponding Certificate of Compliance to the ARTA within 15 working days from Read More…

  • By Filane Mikee Cervantes, November 22, 2021; Philippine News Agency https://www.pna.gov.ph/articles/1160538 Manila – The House of Representatives on Monday approved on second reading a proposal mandating all local government units (LGUs) to earmark at least 15 percent of their annual national tax allotment share for health services. Through voice voting, the chamber passed House Bill 10392, which seeks to amend Section 287 of the Local Government Code of 1991 to ensure the appropriation of at least 15 percent of the share of LGUs from all national taxes or revenues for health services. The bill provides that copies of the health Read More…

  • By Filane Mikee Cervantes, November 22, 2021; Philippine News Agency https://www.pna.gov.ph/articles/1160530 Manila – The House of Representatives on Monday approved on second reading a proposal that would extend the availability of the 2021 national budget until December next year. The lower chamber approved through voice voting House Bill 10373, authored by ACT-CIS Party-list Rep. Eric Go Yap, that would amend Section 62 of the General Provisions of Republic Act 11518 or the General Appropriations Act (GAA) of Fiscal Year 2021. The proposed amendment would extend the availability of the 2021 appropriations until Dec. 31, 2022. Yap said the coronavirus pandemic Read More…

  • By Russell Louis C. Ku, November 22, 2021; Business World https://www.bworldonline.com/house-approves-oda-reform-bill-on-3rd-reading/ The House of Representatives approved a bill on third reading Monday that would reform the process of receiving official development assistance (ODA), improving transparency in implementing ODA-backed projects. In a vote of 166-0 with no abstentions, legislators approved House Bill 10322 or the proposed ODA Effectiveness Act, which seeks to amend Republic Act 8182 or the Official Development Assistance Act of 1996. The bill allows the yield on recently-issued government bonds to serve as the discount rate benchmark when estimating the present value of debt service on grants, if Read More…

  • By Louella Desiderio, November 19, 2021; The Philippine Star https://www.philstar.com/business/2021/11/19/2142235/dti-eyes-one-stop-shop-startups Manila, Philippines — The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) plans to set up a business one-stop shop (BOSS) to make the registration process easier for startups. “We will be establishing, in coordination with the Anti-Red Tape Authority, the Startup Business One Stop Shop (SBOSS), where end-to-end registration of startups can be facilitated,” Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez said during the Slingshot Conference yesterday. He said the SBOSS would serve as a platform containing all information on the legal and regulatory processes involved, from opening, operating, to closing or exiting a Read More…

  • By Louise Maureen Simeon, November 14, 2021; The Philippine Star https://www.philstar.com/nation/2021/11/14/2141144/government-readies-national-id-pinoys-abroad Manila, Philippines — Filipinos living and working abroad will soon be included in the national ID system as the government readies overseas registration. During the third Annual Media Forum of the Philippine Statistics Authority on Friday, PSA Assistant Secretary and deputy statistician Rosalinda Bautista said overseas registration for the Philippine Identification System (PhilSys) is among the priorities for 2022. PSA will partner with the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) and registration in some select areas overseas will start after the May 2022 polls. “Our overseas Filipinos are important and Read More…

  • By Ellalyn De Vera-Ruiz, November 10, 2021; Manila Bulletin https://mb.com.ph/2021/11/10/over-3-million-filipinos-receive-national-ids-psa/ The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) has so far delivered 3.1 million Philippine Identification (PhilID) cards or national IDs nationwide, as of Oct. 31, 2021. PSA said it owes the successful delivery of the PhilID cards to the intensified Philippine Identification System (PhilSys) Step 3 Registration operations, which involves the issuance of the unique PhilSys Number (PSN) and the PhilID card. Moreover, PSA, together with the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) and Philippine Postal Corporation (PHLPost), appealed for public patience as it intensifies efforts to process the registration of more Filipinos. Read More…

  • By ABS-CBN News, November 9, 2021; ABS-CBN News https://news.abs-cbn.com/business/11/09/21/bsp-says-national-id-valid-sufficient-proof-of-identity Manila – Financial institutions such as banks should recognize the new Philippine Identification System (PhilSys) ID or the national ID as sufficient proof of identity when opening bank accounts, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas said Tuesday. In a statement, the BSP said it has urged BSP Supervised Financial Institutions (BSFIs) to accept the PhilID in both physical and mobile formats as “sufficient proof of identity” without the need for another ID. The PhilSys system will offer both online and offline methods of identity authentication through the PhilID physical security features, QR Read More…

  • By The Philippine Star, November 7, 2021; The Philippine Star https://www.philstar.com/headlines/2021/11/07/2139632/house-prioritize-budget-bill-proposals-excise-tax Manila, Philippines — The House of Representatives will be prioritizing passage of the government’s P5.024-trillion 2022 national budget and proposals to cut fuel excise taxes when it resumes session on Monday, House Speaker Lord Allan Velasco said Sunday. Velasco in a statement issued Sunday morning said the House will tackle proposals seeking to either suspend or cut the excise taxes on petroleum products amid rising cost in fuel prices during the resumption. “[The House] would like to be informed of how fuel prices have shot up so fast in Read More…

  • By Catherine Talavera, November 7, 2021; The Philippine Star https://www.philstar.com/business/2021/11/07/2139470/da-creates-committee-get-rid-corruption Manila, Philippines — The Department of Agriculture (DA) has officially launched its anti-corruption committee in line with its efforts to serve the public with integrity and accountability. “It is both our responsibility and duty to serve and to serve with integrity and accountability, free from any form of graft and corrupt practices that not only undermine the very institution we swore to protect and uphold but ultimately steers the people towards suffering and predicament. We must protect them from it at all cost,” Agriculture Undersecretary for Special Concerns Waldo Carpio Read More…

  • By Lade Jean Kabagani, October 31, 2021; Philippine News Agency https://www.pna.gov.ph/articles/1158366 Manila – The Department of Human Settlements and Urban Development (DHSUD) has formed an Anti-Corruption Committee to ensure the integrity of services provided to the housing sector. In a statement on Sunday, Secretary Eduardo del Rosario said the committee is part of the DHSUD’s commitment to provide sustainable projects for all. He said the committee will serve as a venue for checks and balances on policies, programs, and operations. “Ensuring full integrity among us, our backbone of honesty, while we cultivate service excellence,” he stated. Under Executive Order No. Read More…

  • By Kris Crismundo, October 29, 2021; Philippine News Agency https://www.pna.gov.ph/articles/1158163 Manila – The Anti-Red Tape Authority (ARTA) has launched the Regulatory Impact Assessment (RIA) manual to ensure that new policies being introduced by the government do not add undue regulatory burden to citizens. ARTA deputy director general Ernesto Perez said all proposed regulations of the executive department including national government agencies (NGAs), government-owned and controlled corporations (GOCCs), government instrumentalities, and all local government units (LGUs) that provide services for business- and non-business-related transactions shall undergo RIA. “Its ultimate objective is to examine the different policy options and identify the best Read More…

  • By Revin Mikhael D. Ochave, October 26, 2021; Business World https://www.bworldonline.com/arta-simplifies-permit-process-for-laying-cable-wiring-poles-for-internet/ The Anti-Red Tape Authority (ARTA) said it has simplified the permit process for laying cable and wiring poles for internet projects in order to expand broadband coverage. In a statement Tuesday, ARTA said Joint Memorandum Circular (JMC) No. 1, signed by various partner agencies on Oct. 25, simplifies the requirements for underground fiber ducts, above-ground cables, and other facilities. “This is seen further expediting the rollout of telecommunication infrastructure and service projects, leading to faster internet connectivity,” ARTA said. Jeremiah B. Belgica, ARTA director general, said the JMC will Read More…

  • By Bernadette D. Nicolas, October 26, 2021; Business Mirror https://businessmirror.com.ph/2021/10/26/dof-orders-bir-to-create-unit-to-monitor-digital-transactions/ Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III ordered the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) to set up a unit to track the selling of goods online as well as to coordinate with other countries to determine how to properly tax these digital transactions. Following his discussion with the BIR’s National Investigation Division, BIR Commissioner Caesar Dulay said this will be done initially through a task force that will monitor the online selling of goods and services, which has surged amid the Covid-19 pandemic. Dominguez suggested that the BIR consult with their counterparts Read More…

  • By Charissa Luci-Atienza, October 5, 2021; Manila Bulletin https://mb.com.ph/2021/10/05/convergence-dswd-inks-pact-with-partner-agencies-to-address-hunger-poverty/ Seeking to end hunger and poverty in the country, the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) has inked a memorandum of agreement (MOA) with other government agencies for the implementation of three major convergence projects. DSWD Secretary Rolando Joselito D. Bautista was among the signatories of the MOA for thee convergence projects under the Enhanced Partnership Against Hunger and Poverty (EPAHP) Program. These include the EPAHP Resettlement Support, Gatasang Kalabaw Pilot Project, and 4Ps Gulayan sa Pamayanan Project. The ceremonial signing was held on Sept. 28. “Indeed, convergence among national Read More…

  • By Tyrone Jasper C. Piad, October 4, 2021; Business Mirror https://businessmirror.com.ph/2021/10/04/dti-crafts-guidelines-for-online-merchants-asks-for-comments/ The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), along with other government agencies, is currently developing a joint administrative order (JAO) aimed at enhancing consumer confidence in e-commerce transactions. The Trade department has released the draft order recently, which is open for inputs and comments until October 15. The proposed guidelines seek to inform the online merchants and e-commerce platforms to adhere with the relevant laws, including the rules and regulation on the sale, distribution, production, importation, marketing, sale and transport of products. This is in addition to improving protection Read More…

  • By Louella Desiderio, October 3, 2021; The Philippine Star https://www.philstar.com/business/2021/10/03/2131336/arta-rolls-out-app-government-complaints Manila, Philippines — The Anti-Red Tape Authority (ARTA) has launched a mobile app to make it easier for citizens to lodge complaints concerning government agencies. ARTA director general Jeremiah Belgica said during the soft launch of the ARTA Citizens Service app the platform would serve as a tool to make it easier for citizens to bring their complaints against government agencies. ARTA deputy director general Eduardo Bringas said the ARTA Dashboard was also launched to help in handling the complaints received. To file complaints, he said individuals need to register Read More…

  • By Manila Bulletin, October 3, 2021; Manila Bulletin https://mb.com.ph/2021/10/03/foi-bill-moves-forward-in-lower-house-twg-head-confident-of-passage/ The proposed Freedom of Information bill has started to move forward in the House of Representatives. A technical working group (TWG) created to make recommendations on the proposed measure met on Sept. 28 to approve the consolidated version of the bill. Headed by Kabayan Partylist Rep. Ron Salo, the TWG approved the bill that consolidated 19 pending legislative proposals. The consolidated version will be submitted to the Committee on Public Information, for final deliberation and approval. Although still unnumbered, the consolidated FOI bill will be known as “An Act Enabling the Read More…

  • By Lade Jean Kabagani, October 2, 2021; Philippine News Agency https://www.pna.gov.ph/articles/1155418 Manila – The Philippine Identification System (PhilSys) is protected under stringent data privacy measures and security settings. The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA), the lead implementing agency of the project, said in a statement on Saturday that it regularly conducts Privacy Impact Assessments (PIA) for PhilSys’ design and processes. Through the PIA, done by an independent third party, all data privacy and security risks are identified. The PSA said “mitigation strategies, appropriate measures, and safeguards” are in place for personal data and identification of registrants of the Philippine Identification (PhilID) Read More…

  • By Ellalyn De Vera-Ruiz, October 1, 2021; Manila Bulletin https://mb.com.ph/2021/10/01/psa-over-5m-philid-cards-up-for-delivery/ The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) released more than 5 million Philippine Identification (PhilID) cards for delivery to successful registrants. As of Sept. 22, 5,024,018 cards have been turned over to the Philippine Postal Corporation (PHLPost) for delivery. PSA said 2 million cards have been already delivered to the recipients. “The PSA takes this milestone as another reason to be optimistic in achieving our goals for this year. Upon the establishment of PhilSys, the commitment has always been to provide every Filipino with easier and safer access to private and public Read More…

  • By Lee C. Chipongian, September 29, 2021; Manila Bulletin https://mb.com.ph/2021/09/29/bsp-enhances-e-kyc-rules/ The central bank is updating and enhancing the rules on electronic know-your-customer (e-KYC) procedures to improve banks and non-banks’ customer identification with the national ID as an independent source of proving one’s identity in the customer due diligence (CDD). The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas’ (BSP) proposed new e-KYC guidelines are currently being circulated to BSP-supervised financial institutions (BSFIs) for feedback and comments. The feedback due date is on October 12. One of the features of the draft circular, in conducting CDD, is to add on the required minimum information in Read More…

  • By Christine Cudis, September 27, 2021; Philippine News Agency https://www.pna.gov.ph/articles/1154757 Manila – The Philippine Identification System (PhilSys) will be used to identify and verify beneficiaries of assistance programs, such as the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program and Assistance to Individuals in Crisis Situation. The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) and the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) announced on Monday the signing of the Memorandum of Agreement for the pilot test of PhilSys in social welfare programs. Over the next three years, there will also be a gradual integration of PhilSys API (Application Programming Interface)-enabled services into all DSWD programs. PhilSys Read More…

  • By Claudeth Mocon-Ciriaco, September 27, 2021; Business Mirror https://businessmirror.com.ph/2021/09/27/deped-doh-craft-rules-for-pilot-face-to-face-classes/ THE Department of Education (DepEd) and the Department of Health (DOH) on Monday identified mechanisms to ensure safety of participating learners, teaching and non-teaching staff, and their families in the pilot implementation of limited face-to-face classes in select low-risk areas. At the virtual signing and press briefing on the DepEd-DOH Joint Memorandum Circular (JMC) for the Pilot Implementation of Face-to-Face Learning Modality, Education Secretary Leonor Magtolis Briones said DepEd has been “proactive” in planning for safe return to schools. “The operational guideline for the pilot run of face-to-face classes is a Read More…

  • By The Manila Times, September 27, 2021; The Manila Times https://www.manilatimes.net/2021/09/27/public-square/deped-cso-seal-partnership-for-open-government-partnership/1816171 THE Department of Education (DepEd) recently sealed an agreement with the Civil Society Organization (CSO) education cluster in adopting an open participatory monitoring and evaluation platform to reaffirm its commitment under the Open Government Partnership for the 5th National Action Plan (NAP) 2019-2022. “This partnership agreement defines our responsibilities and our commitments to the Open Government Partnership 5th National Action Plan. The delivery of education services is more meaningful and effective and relevant if there is shared responsibility among the various stakeholders,” DepEd Secretary Leonor Magtolis Briones shared. DBM Read More…

  • By Argyll Cyrus Geducos, September 26, 2021; Manila Bulletin https://mb.com.ph/2021/09/26/arta-to-launch-new-digital-platforms-for-publics-complaints/ As the public continues to shift to more accessible digital channels, the Anti-Red Tape Authority (ARTA) is set to launch two digital platforms aimed at boosting the agency’s capacity in complaints handling. In a statement, ARTA Director-General Jeremiah Belgica said the two new platforms called the ARTA Dashboard and the ARTA Citizen Services Mobile Application will give ARTA more of a national presence online. The ARTA Dashboard will provide a glimpse of the agency’s operations and will serve as a mechanism to monitor the progress of priority activities. Meanwhile, the Read More…

  • By Gabriela Baron, September 25, 2021; Manila Bulletin https://mb.com.ph/2021/09/25/pcw-inks-deal-with-private-organizations-to-help-empower-wmes/ The Philippine Commission on Women (PCW), the project holder of Supporting Women’s Economic Empowerment (WEE) Project signed Memoranda of Agreement (MOA) with four private organizations that will complement government efforts in making the business environment responsive to women micro-entrepreneurs (WMEs). PCW partnered with Bayan Academy for Social Entrepreneurship and Human Resource Development (Bayan Academy), Empowering Communities with Hope Opportunities through Sustainable Initiatives (ECHOSi Foundation), National Confederation of Cooperatives in the Philippines (NATCCO), and the Socio-Economic Development Program Multipurpose Cooperative (SEDP-MPC) in facilitating the sustainability and competitiveness of WMEs in the food, Read More…

  • By Jenina P. Ibañez, September 21, 2021; Business World https://www.bworldonline.com/twg-to-make-recommendations-for-localized-doing-business-report/ A technical working group led by the Anti-Red Tape Authority (ARTA) will make recommendations on a localized Ease of Doing Business report in November. The World Bank group last week announced that it would halt its flagship global Doing Business report after irregularities regarding data changes in the 2018 and 2020 versions, prompting ARTA to announce that it would look into doing a local index. The Work Bank report assessed countries’ competitiveness by measuring regulations that enhance and constrain business activity. Countries with fewer regulations will have a higher ranking Read More…

  • By Bruce Rodriguez, September 20, 2021; ABS-CBN News https://news.abs-cbn.com/business/09/20/21/arta-launches-online-resources-for-startups Manila – The Philippines’ Anti-Red Tape Authority (ARTA) launched Monday the first phase of an online platform where the public and government agencies can access all regulations related to opening a business. ARTA deputy Director General, Undersecretary Ernesto Perez said the launching of the Philippine Business Regulations Information System (PBRIS) and the Anti-Red Tape Electronic Management Information System (ARTEMIS) would help ensure the dissemination and public access to information on regulatory management. “This will allow both the transacting public and a government agency a platform wherein one who intends, for instance, Read More…

  • By Philippine News Agency, September 16, 2021; Philippine News Agency https://www.pna.gov.ph/articles/1153731?fbclid=IwAR2aRZhfi_Z38csJvmyL79-9p3GunvQFDGFau80EgsaxEJ6rDRLqpr1v9I4 Manila – Establishing effective water supply and sanitation (WSS) sector institutions and strengthening the regulatory environment are needed to address the future increase in water consumption and address gaps in sanitation services, the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) said. In a speech during the virtual launch of the Philippine Water Supply and Sanitation Master Plan (PSWSSMP) Thursday, Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Karl Kendrick Chua underscored that integrated interventions from the local and national government, and stakeholders are crucial to achieve the goal of providing universal access to safe and Read More…

  • By Philippine News Agency, September 15, 2021; Philippine News Agency https://www.pna.gov.ph/articles/1153598?fbclid=IwAR3v-qRHAsdgW-acdzXbIFUNClKPvHXB0sKDjh3zwomfJmf4OJ8_DlkZV3I Manila – The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has made starting a business even faster and easier, as it held the soft launch for a new feature in its online company registration system that will allow applicants to complete the process in one day. Starting Sept. 15, domestic corporations may register with the Commission through the One-Day Submission and Express Registration of Companies (OneSEC) feature of the Electronic Simplified Processing of Application for Registration of Company (eSPARC). In a statement Wednesday, SEC chairperson Emilio Aquino said OneSEC gives new Read More…

  • By The Manila Times, September 13, 2021; The Manila Times https://www.manilatimes.net/2021/09/13/public-square/dost-initiates-study-on-telecommuting/1814541 THE Department of Science and Technology (DoST) conducted a research survey to evaluate if telecommuting schemes in government organizations could work for better productivity. The DoST study aims to identify and differentiate preferred telecommuting schemes of government workers as well as determine significant factors that either promote or inhibit telecommuting success; whether telecommuting is preferred over office work and identify reasons for the preference. Likewise, this project will determine the willingness of government workers to adopt telecommuting as a work arrangement option after the Covid-19 pandemic. The team used Read More…

  • By Daphne Galvez, September 8, 2021; Philippine Daily Inquirer https://newsinfo.inquirer.net/1485051/nearly-42-million-filipinos-have-signed-up-for-national-id Manila, Philippines — Nearly 42 million Filipinos have already signed up for the Philippine Identification System (PhilSys) for their national ID, National Economic Development Authority (NEDA) Secretary Karl Chua said. In a briefing with President Rodrigo Duterte that aired Wednesday morning, Chua said that as of September 3, a total of 41,970,083 Filipinos have registered for Step 1, which involves the door-to-door collection of information in low-income households and appointment setting for Step 2. Meanwhile, a total of 28,682,680 individuals have completed the Step 2 registration, which involves going to Read More…

  • By Filane Mikee Cervantes, September 6, 2021; Philippine News Agency https://www.pna.gov.ph/articles/1152719 Manila – A measure seeking to modernize tax administration and improve tax compliance has hurdled second reading at the House of Representatives. During Monday’s plenary session, the chamber approved through voice voting House Bill 8942, or the proposed Ease of Paying Taxes Act, which seeks to introduce administrative tax reforms by amending several sections in the National Internal Revenue Code (NIRC) of 1997. The bill aims to simplify tax compliance procedures by segmenting taxpayers and better tailoring processes, enhance the portability of tax transactions, and legislate the Taxpayer’s Bill Read More…

  • By Louise Maureen Simeon, September 6, 2021; The Philippine Star https://www.philstar.com/business/2021/09/06/2125077/philippines-needs-policy-framework-creative-economy-adbi Manila, Philippines — The Philippines should come up with a comprehensive policy framework that would allow the creative economy to recover from the pandemic and contribute to sustainable development moving forward. Tokyo-based Asian Development Bank Institute (ADBI), the multilateral lender’s think tank, said supporting creative industries would not only boost income and job creation and expand value chains, but also aid in achieving sustainable development. In the ASEAN region, ADBI said the Philippines, alongside Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand, has been promoting trade in creative goods and services over Read More…

  • By Louise Maureen Simeon, September 1, 2021; The Philippine Star https://www.philstar.com/business/2021/09/01/2123913/philippines-long-road-recovery-adb Manila, Philippines — Economic recovery for the Philippines will continue to be tough, with its return to pre-crisis levels seen only by late 2023, the Asian Development Bank (ADB) said. In a webinar organized by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) Philippines yesterday, ADB country director Kelly Bird said economic recovery for the Philippines has been set in motion, but a rebound would not be a walk in the park. “We expect the recovery to pre-COVID-19 level of GDP (gross domestic product) sometime in late 2023,” Bird said. “It Read More…

  • By Chino S. Leyco, August 27, 2021; Manila Bulletin https://mb.com.ph/2021/08/27/manufacturing-to-lift-ph-income-status-neda/ The National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) said the ability of the Philippines to move up to high-income country status hinges on the long-term development of the agriculture and manufacturing sectors. In a recent speech at the Department of Trade and Industry – Board of Investments’ Manufacturing Summit, Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Karl Kendrick T. Chua emphasized the importance of the manufacturing sector in the country. “If we are to grow and sustain our upper middle-income country status and eventually move up to high-income country status in the next two decades, Read More…

  • By Philippine News Agency, August 27, 2021; Philippine News Agency https://www.pna.gov.ph/articles/1151781 Manila – The Department of Health (DOH) and the University of the Philippines-Philippine Genome Center (UP-PGC), in coordination with the Department of Science and Technology (DOST), announced Friday it is closer to strengthening the country’s biosurveillance capacity with the approval of the PHP295.7 million budget needed for the expansion of the UP-PGC in Visayas and Mindanao. Aside from detecting Covid-19 variants, genomic biosurveillance plays a big role in determining causes of outbreaks, tracking how a virus is transmitted, and complementing disease surveillance in guiding the overall public health response Read More…

  • By Ellalyn De Vera-Ruiz, August 27, 2021; Manila Bulletin https://mb.com.ph/2021/08/27/26-3-million-filipinos-complete-biometrics-registration-for-national-id/ The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) said that 26.3 million Filipinos nationwide have completed the second of a three-step registration for the Philippine Identification System (PhilSys) as of Aug. 18. Step 2 registration involves the biometric information capture and demographic information verification of the applicants. During the implementation of enhanced community quarantine, PSA had suspended the operations of registration centers in Metro Manila and six provinces, which limited opportunities for Filipinos to register. However, PSA said it was still able to record an increase in registrations from the remaining registration centers Read More…

  • By Louise Maureen Simeon, August 24, 2021; The Philippine Star https://www.philstar.com/headlines/2021/08/24/2122147/45-million-pinoys-open-bank-accounts-national-id-rollout Manila, Philippines — Some 4.5 million Filipinos were able to open a bank account for the first time with the continued rollout of the national ID aimed at addressing financial inclusion, especially among the country’s low-income households. In a report to Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III, the Land Bank of the Philippines said 4.47 million people managed to be included in the formal banking system as of the first semester. Of this number, 27 percent or 1.23 million were able to access online digital payments and other transactions, mostly Read More…

  • By Neil Arwin Mercado, August 23, 2021; Philippine Daily Inquirer https://newsinfo.inquirer.net/1477594/house-approves-bill-modernizing-bureau-of-immigration Manila, Philippines — The House of Representatives approved on final reading Monday a bill which seeks to modernize the Bureau on Immigration (BI). With 209 affirmative votes, zero negative, and no abstention, the lower chamber approved House Bill No. 8850 or the “Bureau on Immigration Modernization Act.” The bill seeks to modernize structures and mechanisms necessary for the administration of immigration laws and to professionalize the immigration service by instituting a rigid system for screening and selection of officials and employees. The measure also creates a Board of Commissioners Read More…

  • By Argyll Cyrus Geducos, August 18, 2021; Manila Bulletin https://mb.com.ph/2021/08/18/covid-19-claims-backlog-must-be-resolved-aggressively-arta-tells-philhealth/ The Anti-Red Tape Authority (ARTA) has asked PhilHealth to be “more aggressive” in finding solutions to their connectivity issues to address the pending applications for coronavirus-related claims. ARTA Director-General Jeremiah Belgica made the appeal after the agency received complaints from private hospitals that are having difficulty in securing their COVID-19-related claims from PhilHealth. In a meeting with the private sector, Belgica advised PhilHealth officials to be aggressive in finding solutions for their concerns to improve their services quicker. “Kailangan matapos natin yung backlogs natin. Medyo madami, nakita ko kanina, ang Read More…

  • By Bernadette D. Nicolas, August 18, 2021; Business Mirror https://businessmirror.com.ph/2021/08/18/lockdowns-push-dbcc-to-cut-growth-target/ The government’s economic team decided to forgo its 6- to 7-percent growth target for the Philippine economy this year following the reimposition of lockdowns to curb the spread of the more contagious Covid-19 Delta variant. The Cabinet-level Development Budget Coordination Committee (DBCC) announced on Wednesday that it has cut its GDP growth target this year to 4 to 5 percent. If not for the recent surge in Covid-19 cases, the economic team said their original growth target could have been attainable. “Without the present spike, the original growth target of Read More…

  • By Genalyn Kabiling, August 17, 2021; Manila Bulletin https://mb.com.ph/2021/08/17/duterte-proposes-p5-024-trillion-budget-social-services-to-get-p2-trillion/ The Duterte government will seek the swift passage of a proposed ₱5.024 trillion national budget for next year to sustain its pandemic response, social services, infrastructure development, among others. The bulk of the proposed 2022 budget, endorsed by President Duterte, will go to social services sector with almost ₱2 trillion allocation, according to Presidential spokesman Harry Roque. “Ang proposed para sa susunod na taon ay nasa ₱5.024 trillion, ang pinakamataas na budget sa ating kasaysayan (The proposed national budget is ₱5.024 trillion, the biggest budget in our history),” Roque said during Read More…

  • By Elizabeth Marcelo, May 31, 2021; The Philippine Star https://www.philstar.com/headlines/2021/05/31/2102002/denr-inks-p2-billion-partnership-usaid Manila, Philippines — The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) has entered into a five-year partnership agreement with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) for P2 billion worth of projects which aim to improve the country’s biodiversity conservation and access to clean water. In a virtual ceremony held last Thursday, Environment Secretary Roy Cimatu signed memoranda of understanding (MOUs) with USAID for the Sustainable Interventions for Biodiversity, Oceans and Landscapes (SIBOL) and the Safe Water projects. “Given the current pandemic, the DENR is committed more than ever Read More…

  • By Revin Mikhael D. Ochave, May 30, 2021; Business World https://www.bworldonline.com/world-bank-rural-development-loan-approval-expected-soon/ The World Bank is expected to approve a $280-million loan from a facility known as second additional financing (AF2), which will support agriculture enterprises and rural infrastructure works under the Philippine Rural Development Project (PRDP), the Department of Agriculture (DA) said. Agriculture Secretary William D. Dar said in a statement on Sunday that the $280-million loan includes a co-financing grant from the European Union (EU) worth 18.3 million euros. Mr. Dar said the World Bank is expected to approve the AF2-EU loan on June 17 with formal signing scheduled Read More…

  • By Ben O. de Vera, May 19, 2021; Philippine Daily Inquirer https://business.inquirer.net/323142/program-to-boost-lgus-revenue-generation-capabilities Local governments’ revenue-generation capabilities are expected to get a boost from a project financed by Manila-based Asian Development Bank (ADB), which is aimed at shoring up real property tax collection. During the first meeting of the newly formed interagency governing board (IGB), which is implementing the ADB-funded local governance reform project, Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III said “local governments are at the frontline of serving vulnerable communities, especially during these very challenging times … they are the catalysts for building a new economy while the national government does Read More…

  • By Jenina P. Ibañez, May 6, 2021; Business World https://www.bworldonline.com/philippines-plans-to-establish-artificial-intelligence-research-center/ The government plans to build a national center for artificial intelligence (AI) research that will help the private sector develop new technologies. A goal under the artificial intelligence roadmap launched on Wednesday, the National Center for AI Research (N-CAIR) will employ full-time research scientists and engineers. “The N-CAIR will encourage companies to adopt AI by building their capacity to produce new products, processes and services that use AI,” Trade Secretary Ramon M. Lopez said at the launch. The AI roadmap outlined 42 “strategic tasks” or goals that cover regulation, workforce Read More…