F.A.B. needs better public transport industry now By Henry Empeño
ARIVELES, Bataan—Attention, transport operators: The Freeport Area of Bataan (FAB), tagged as an emerging industrial dragon, is in need of a reliable public transportation system for the growing number of workers employed by its business locators. As of now, the Authority of the Freeport Area of Bataan (Afab) said it is coordinating with the local government units here to convince transportation firms to start operations in the industrial area. Emmanuel D. Pineda, Afab deputy administrator for operations, said the free-port agency began discussing transport-assistance options with the Mariveles municipal government and the Bataan provincial government, after Afab recorded a total of 30,172 workers in the free port last month. The August total meant a 136-percent increase over the 12,777 FAB work force in 2010, or a See “Free port,” A2
A broader look at today’s business n
Sunday, September 11, 2016 Vol. 11 No. 337
Tetangco: Risks to economic growth external in nature DOLLAR JUMPS AS FED T HIKE BURNS FOREX By Bianca Cuaresma
HE risk factors that may derail the economy’s growth momentum right now are largely external in nature, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) chief said, while assuring markets the country’s central monetary authority has the tools to manage such risks.
In a recent speech, BSP Gov. Amando M. Tetangco Jr. bared risks that could “possibly unsettle” the economy—those that emanate largely from developments outside the country. Tetangco cited “the most pressing” risks externally include the timing of the next rate increase of the United States Federal Reserve and the magnitude of any further easing from the Bank of Japan and the European Central Bank. See “Growth,” A2
THE crater of Mount Pinatubo is frequented by foreign tourists. The crater is reachable via Santa Juliana in Capas, Tarlac. LEO VILLACARLOS
TO AN ETERNAL INHERITANCE
Accept with favor, O Lord, we pray, the prayers and offerings of Your Church, that, with Saint Peter as her shepherd, she may come to an eternal inheritance, for it is through his teaching that she holds the faith in its integrity. Peter said to Jesus: “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” And Jesus replied: “You are Peter, and upon this rock, I will build My Church.” O God, who are at our celebration of the feast day of the blessed Apostle Peter have nourished us by communion in the Body and Blood of Christ, grant, we pray, that this redeeming exchange may be for us a sacrament of unity and peace. Amen! Give Us this Day, Committee on Divine Worship, Shared by Louie. M. Lacson
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Tarlac wants inclusive economic growth and human development By Joey Pavia
ARLAC CITY—Gov. Susan A. Yap stressed she wants an inclusive growth and human development to sustain the economic progress and limit the effects of poverty in this northernmost Central Luzon province. Yap, in her first State of the Province Address (Sopa) on Thursday, said she will push for decent
PESO exchange rates n US 46.8370
work and economic growth for the benefit of her 1,366,027 constituents (2015 census). “People are the first priority,” Yap said at least thrice in her speech at the Provincial Board (PB) session hall during the PB’s regular session presided by Vice Gov. Carlito S. David. Yap said she will push for the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) for
three years. Included in the SGDs are no poverty; quality education; good health and well-being; and zero hunger. “Our goal is for inclusive growth: No Tarlaqueño is to be left behind. Our governance will be characterized by people’s participation in good governance, responsible leadership and sustainable development, and equal opportunity for all,” said Yap, a first-term Continued on A2
HE dollar climbed for a third day while emerging-market currencies from South Africa to Brazil to Mexico plunged, as traders boosted bets on an interest-rate increase from the Federal Reserve (the Fed) later this month. A gauge of the greenback jumped after Fed Bank of Boston President Eric S. Rosengren warned waiting too long to raise interest rates threatened to overheat the US economy and could risk financial stability. High-yielding currencies, including the Australian dollar and Norway’s krone, also tumbled as commodity prices halted a four-day rally. “Carry currencies were strong against the dollar, as Fed policy seemed to be very much benign,” said Mazen Issa, a senior foreign-exchange strategist at Toronto-Dominion Bank in New York, referring to the strategy of borrowing in low-interest-rate currencies and buying those offering higher yields. “It’s the market recognizing that there have been a litany of Fed speakers providing a reminder that
there’s a chance a hike is still in the cards.” The dollar has almost erased its weekly loss, as traders increased the probability US policy-makers will boost borrowing costs as early as this month. Demand for higher-yielding currencies ebbed, as European Central Bank policymakers didn’t discuss extension of their bond-purchase plan at their September 7 meeting, fueling speculation central banks start to question the benefits of further monetary easing to bolster economic growth. The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index, which tracks the greenback against 10 major peers, rose 0.5 percent as of 5 p.m. in New York. The US currency gained 0.2 percent to $1.1233 per euro and was up 0.2 percent to ¥102.69. The greenback gained more than 1 percent versus the rand, the real and the Aussie. An index of 20 emerging-market currencies fell for a second day after reaching the highest level since August 19. See “Dollar,” A2
n japan 0.4570 n UK 62.2792 n HK 6.0384 n CHINA 7.0273 n singapore 34.6581 n australia 35.7835 n EU 52.7572 n SAUDI arabia 12.4905
Source: BSP (9 September 2016 )
A2 Sunday, September 11, 2016
Free port… 17-percent growth in just one year, from the 25,803 total in 2015. “We have to prepare for the continuous expansion of the FAB,” Pineda said, adding that the initiative to establish a better transportation system, as well as a housing program for workers, is part of Afab’s commitment to build a world-class free port that would meet all the needs and demands of business locators. The sought-after modern transportation system, Pineda added, “will also help the FAB lure more investors and convince employees, not only in Bataan, but also in Central Luzon, to work in the free port.” Pineda said Mayor Ace Jello Concepcion and the municipal council of Mariveles are currently helping Afab scout for capable transportation firms, which will provide service to night-shift workers in the fee port. Concepcion had reportedly conferred with the Land Transportation and Franchising Regulatory Board for the granting of permits for the operation of at least 10 minibuses, with a dedicated route from the FAB to Balanga City. Pineda said Concepcion and the town council had agreed that under the free port’s new business concept, the inclusion of a dependable and reliable transport system is an important factor to achieve growth. “Hopefully, the number of public-utility vehicles and buses running from Mariveles to the City of Balanga will double as the FAB
Continued from a1 Pineda: A modern transportation system “will also help the FAB lure more investors and convince employees, not only in Bataan, but also in Central Luzon, to work in the free port.”
continues to expand,” Pineda added. Afab projections said the current number of workers in the Bataan free port will double in the next six years, as more foreign investors express interest in locating their operations in the FAB. Another positive development for FAB, Pineda said, is the scheduled construction by San Miguel Corp., the Philippines’s largest food conglomerate, of a 500-hectare industrial park here. The FAB is building a reputation as the fashion-manufacturing hub of the Philippines, with clusters of companies producing high-end brands of garment, apparel, shoes and bags, and accessories and jewelries. However, Afab officials said some new projects signed on last year will be in the areas of business-process outsourcing, information technology, tourism and power. As of December 2015, Afab had recorded a total of 114 business locators. Meanwhile, the 28 new projects it approved last year are expected to bring in fresh investments worth P6.2 billion and open at least 4,900 jobs in the next three years.
Former energy secretary backs use of nuclear power By Lenie Lectura
ORMER Energy Secretary Francisco Viray on Saturday said nuclear power is a “good part of energy mix” because it is a stable, reliable and predictable source of energy. “On a general principle, there is no problem with nuclear energy in terms of supporting our power supply. Take away the concerns on public acceptance and it is feasible,” said Viray, president of Phinma Energy Corp. However, nuclear power is a costly investment. As such, whoever owns and operates a nuclearpower plant should be able to identify and seal an off-taker deal. “Yes, nuclear energy will lower the prices at WESM [Wholesale
Electricty Spot Market], but there should be an identified market for it. It needs big contracts because you can’t cycle nuclear energy,” Viray said. If the private sector will own, operate, and maintain the power plant, “then government subsidy is a must,” Viray said. Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi earlier said he is “open to nuclear power.” Cusi also supports the proposal on the use of small modular reactors (SMRs) raised during the three-day conference on the Prospects of Nuclear Power in the AsiaPacific Region held in Manila. The Philippines is an archipelago consisting of 7,107 islands. Cusi said SMRs would a big help in providing electricity to far-flung areas.
Ambassador Maria Zenaida Angara Collinson, overall chairman of the conference, said the region will benefit from advances in SMRs owing to the specific geographic nature of the region. The Asia-Pacific region, she added, may benefit from the introduction of nuclear power to decrease reliance of fossil fuels and meet clean-energy objectives. However, Collinson cited key challenges to the development of a high nuclear scenario in the region. These include public acceptance and safety concerns, nuclear waste issues, large upfront investment, and uncertainty in government support. She said public participation and involvement is critical at every stage of a nuclear power program.
Fuel prices rising again B
ASED on a four-day trading in the world oil market, the price of local petroleum products is expected to increase between 10 centavos and 20 centavos per liter, said Director Melita Obillo of the Oil Industry Management Bureau on Friday. “This was based on our Monday to Thursday estimate,” she said in a text message. Final price adjustment would be
known on Monday when oil companies make an announcement. On September 6 most of the oil companies implemented a decrease of 50 centavos per liter in diesel and 35 centavos per liter in kerosene. Gasoline prices remained unchanged. This resulted in a corresponding decline in the year-to-date adjustments of diesel, now at net increase of P4.43 per liter. Gasoline
remains at net increase of P2.49 per liter and liquefied petroleum gas at a net decrease of P7.33 per kilogram. The price rollback comes after three consecutive weeks of oil price increase implemented by the oil companies. “This is to reflect movements in the international petroleum market,” oil companies said. Lenie Lectura
Tarlac wants inclusive economic growth and human development Continued from a1
governor and former representative. She said leaders should not lack “passion” when serving their people. Yap said, “I envision Tarlac to be a haven for investors and investments to further develop our local economy.” She said their province is on its way to becoming an investment destination. She vowed to promote economic zones and the Clark Green City, located within the Clark Special Economic Zone in Tarlac province. It covers 9,450 hectares. The ambitious project costing P607 billion is managed by the Bases ConverTimmanguyob Falls in San Clemente sion and DevelopTarlac Provincial Information Office ment Authority. Yap said she will review the realtotals P537 million. property tax outdated since 1960. Governor Yap said, “Our provShe will start a computerization sysince is beautiful,” adding that he tem of the capitol’s operation. will further improve their tourism She said they will construct a destination, including the Timnew “green” capitol building in the manguyob Falls in San Clemente same area, replacing the more than and the Mount Pinatubo trek via 100-year-old facility. Santa Juliana in Capas. Yap said they are proud of “Our food is delicious,” Goverthe recent economic gains, as Tarnor Yap said, adding that they are lac ranked the top 5 province in investing heavily on education, inthe country in generating locally frastructure, ecotourism developsourced revenue in 2014 and 2015. ment and manpower training. She credited her brother, former Asked for his comment, First Tarlac governor and now Second District Rep. Charlie Cojuangco said District Rep. Vic Yap, for the huge Governor Yap’s Sopa “is very imprestaxes gained in his last two full sive, simple, concise, direct to the years at the province’s helm. point and very easy to understand.” The locally generated taxes He added, “I am hoping the lady govamounted to around P350 million ernor will meet her targets for the in 2014, the Provincial Informaprovince mentioned in her speech.” tion Office said. Cojuangco, son of business Representative Yap prioritized man Eduardo Cojuangco Jr., said health and livelihood when he was he will prioritize the improvement governor from 2007 to 2016. of the agriculture production in his The provincial government is district. infusing P252 million for the Tar Governor Yap said she is also lac Provincial Hospital, P90 milsupporting all-out the renewed lion for the La Paz Hospital, P20 campaign against illegal drugs million for the Gilberto Teodoro spearheaded by President Duterte. Hospital and P175 million for the She vowed to construct a new drugConcepcion Hospital. The amount rehabilitation center.
Dollar… Continued from a1
A carry-trade strategy buying four highest-yielding currencies, including the real and rand, against four lowest-yielding ones, such as the euro and yen, lost about 0.6 percent on Friday, cutting its gain this year to 6.2 percent, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The same strategy lost 8.5 percent last year. Futures pricing indicated about a 30-percent chance of tighter policy this month, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The probability of a move by year-end was 58 percent. The calculations assume the effective Fed funds rate will average 0.625 percent, after the central bank’s next boost. “Rosengren, usually in the dovish spectrum of the committee, delivered a more hawkish-thanexpected speech, which is pushing the dollar up,” said Andres Jaime, a foreign-exchange and rates strategist at Barclays Plc. in New York. “September should be a live meeting and the Fed probably wants the market to price at least one hike before year-end.” Bloomberg News
Growth… Continued from a1
Tetangco: “It is the possibility of second-round effects on the EU that is more concerning because exports to EU account for 11.5 percent of total exports.”
The governor also said another potential source of vulnerability are the shifts in the Chinese economic policies—including the change in its growth model and the move to a more market-oriented and weaker renminbi—and the so-called Brexit, the United Kingdom’s decision to leave the European Union economic bloc. “These risks impact us in the short term, through financial-market volatility, and in the long term, possibly through aggregate demand dynamics,” Tetangco said. As for how the monetary policy shifts in advanced economies could rattle local markets, Tetangco said that as markets digest potential pronouncements from advanced economy policy-makers, the Philippines is likely to experience a toggling between “risk on” and “risk off” market behavior, which, in turn, always creates “noise” or volatilities in financial markets. Tetangco said the country’s monetary authorities are prepared for this kind of eventuality in local markets, as they currently have room to allow the exchange rate to absorb some near-term shock. While he also expressed optimism the country can ride a potential slowdown in the Chinese economy, Tetangco said they are monitoring closely the secondround effects that could arise from the Brexit. “The direct impact to us of a slowdown in the UK would be minimal, given that our exports to the UK account for only 0.8 percent of total exports. It is the possibility of second-round effects on the EU, however, that is more concerning because exports to EU account for 11.5 percent of total exports,” Tetangco said. “We, therefore, need to remain watchful of developments in the UK, particularly during the transition to ‘exit,’” he added. As for China, the governor said, should the policies of the Chinese authorities bring about more sustainable growth, “this should be overall positive for us as it reduces global tail risks.” On the domestic front, the only big foreseen risk to derailing the economy is the possibility of natural calamities. “While no one can fully prepare for the wrath of nature, the country has put in place policies that will help ensure we have adequate supply of staple foods, particularly rice,” he said.
www.businessmirror.com.ph • Editor: Dionisio L. Pelayo
Sunday, September 11, 2016 A3
‘PCC findings will further drag Internet issues’ By Lorenz S. Marasigan
HE initial findings of the Mergers and Acquisition Office (MAO) of the Philippine Competition Commission (PCC) on the P70-billion deal among PLDT, Globe Telecom and San Miguel Corp. (SMC) telecommunications units are anticonsumer, the Internet Surfers Guild of the Philippines (ISGP) said. ISGP Lead Convenor Ramon Jose said the 16-page preliminary statement of concerns released by MAO deviates from the real consumer issue, which is the immediate improvement of the state of the Internet in the country by using the much-needed frequencies that have long been denied to the Filipino people. Jose, a college professor, said both PLDT and Globe were given a deadline by the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) to
improve their Internet services as a condition for the approval of the deal and couse of the 700-megahertz and 2,600-MHz frequencies. “The government and the public will hold these telcos accountable if they fail to deliver within the given time frame. However, seeing that the PCC is hampering the telcos from using these frequencies, all the more the dream of having high-speed Internet will remain just a dream,” Jose said. ISGP said the role of the PCC to
look into the welfare of consumers and businesses must be recognized but they must not treat the SMC deal as an ordinary anticompetition case because of a bigger underlying concern, which impacts consumers today—the slow Internet. “The PCC must put in mind the directive of President Duterte, which is the immediate improvement of the Internet services,” he added. Jose stressed that the telecommunications sector should not be treated as an ordinary consumer industry, like many of the anticompetition cases, because of its utility function. “The delivery of efficient telecommunications services to the public, such as a faster Internet connection, must not be hampered, especially in today’s digital economy,” he said. Historically, the country’s telecommunications sector has been the most neglected industry in terms of regulation and legislation, according to Jose. “The only governing law on telecommunications, Republic Act 7925, or the Public Telecommunications Policy Act, was ratified way back in 1994 when the Internet was still in its infancy stage,” he said. Compared to other countries that
ranked high in the global Internet connectivity speed index, whether it is from Akamai or Ookla for fixed-line Internet or Open Signal for mobile Internet, the Philippines is the only country without government support for national broadband policy covering investment and infrastructure. “The different government institutions, including the PCC, must get their act together and do what the President said. “The impact of slow Internet is not only about the bad experience of ordinary Filipino consumers, but the image of the country, as well, which could turn off potential foreign investors and deny more Filipinos of jobs,” Jose said. ISGP emphasized that the sheer magnitude of the issue of slow Internet has gone beyond the usual poor customer service of the telcos and Internet service providers. “An outdated telecommunications law and the absence of a national broadband policy should be recognized as the real problems, which caused the slow Internet in this country. Fix these two first and the other problems, such as regulation, local government units and others will follow,” Jose added.
Mindanao legislator revives bill giving military chief 36-month tour of duty
BILL granting a 36-month tour of duty for the Armed Forces chief of staff that was vetoed by then-President Benigno S. Aquino III four years ago has been revived by a member of Congress who hopes that this time, President Duterte would favor the measure.
“The quick turnover of Armed Forces chiefs of staff has become counterproductive—even somewhat disruptive,” said PDP-Laban Rep. Johnny T. Pimentel of Surigao del Norte, a member of the House Committee on National Defense and Security. “Over the last 30 years, the Armed Forces has had
28 chiefs of staff who each served an average of only 12 months. In the case of our last 10 chiefs of staff, each actually served only an average of seven months,” Pimentel said. The Armed Forces chief of staff’s counterpart in the United States—the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff—enjoys a fixed term
of two years, he pointed out. “If we are to reinforce the military as our protector and defender of the national territory, we should give its chief operating officer a stable stint to carry out programs and projects with some degree of constancy,” Pimentel said.
Jovee Marie N. dela Cruz
New postal ID prevents identity theft By Marvyn N. Benaning Correspondent
ILLIONS of Filipinos and foreigners alike are assured that no one can steal their identities by availing themselves of improved postal ID (PID) cards issued by the Philippine Postal Corp. (PHLPost). The PID cards have been described as the most secure government-issued identification card, and no less than the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) attests to its advanced safety features by accepting it as a valid ID for any financial transaction in all banks in the country. Bank tellers may now demand the PID from those withdrawing inordinately huge sums to check whether they are genuine bank clients are con men out to steal money from foreign accounts. Owing to its improved features, PHLPost discontinued the issuance of the basic postal ID on the same day the improved PID was launched but made sure that the safety features in the old IDs were incorporation in the new identity cards. Assistant Postmaster General Luis Carlos said the tamper-proof PID was tested countless times before it was unveiled at the Manila Central Post Office on April 22, 2016. Carlos said the additional security features of the improved
PID that are difficult to reproduce guarantee the card’s integrity. One such feature is a hologram of PHLPost’s running mailman, which can only be seen at certain angles, and the ghost image of the applicant’s photograph. Since these are visible to the naked eye, Carlos said, “government personnel, bank tellers and merchants can easily determine the authenticity of the ID and reject all questionable applications immediately.” Moreover, a special ink on the ID is illuminated when subjected to ultraviolet light. “Ensuring that every cardholder is unique and has met the necessary requirements to possess the card is a software called the Automated Fingerprint Identification System. It controls ID issuance by comparing an applicant’s fingerprint to the fingerprint records database,” Carlos added. To make sure that the PID is protected twice, all the physical security features from the previous ID, such like the guilloche, or the mechanically engraved patterns, and the quick response (QR) code, have been retained in the card. Dissemination of the QR code scanner, which could be installed in compatible smartphones, will continue to be implemented, as well, Carlos said. This application, he noted, verifies the integrity of the card and the data it contains.
A4 Sunday, September 11, 2016 • Editor: Angel R. Calso
Fossil fuels: At what price?
By John Scales Avery | Inter Press Service
SLO, Norway—We often read comparisons between the prices of solar energy or wind energy with the prices of fossil fuels. It is encouraging to see that renewables are rapidly becoming competitive, and are often cheaper than coal or oil. In fact, if coal, oil and natural gas were given their correct prices, renewables would be recognized as being incomparably cheaper than fossil fuels. The concept of externalities in pricing was first put forward by two British economists, Henry Sidgwick (1838-1900) and Arthur C. Pigou (1877-1959). In his book The Economics of Welfare published in 1920, Pigou further developed the concept of externalities in pricing, which had earlier been introduced by Sidgwick. He proposed that a tax be introduced to correct pricing for the effect of externalities. An externality is the cost or benefit of some unintended consequence of an economic action. For example, tobacco companies do not really wish for their customers to die from cancer, but a large percentage of them do, and the social costs of this slaughter ought to be reflected in the price of tobacco. The true environmental costs of fossil-fuel use are much greater than those of smoking. Unless we stop burning fossil fuels within one or two decades, we risk a situation where uncontrollable feedback loops will lead to catastrophic climate change, regardless of human efforts to prevent the disaster. If we do not act very quickly to replace fossil fuels by renewables, we risk initiating a sixth geological extinction event. This might even be comparable to the Permian-Triasic extinction, during which 96 percent of all marine species and 70 percent of all vertebrates were lost forever. Far from being penalized for destroying the global environment and threatening the future of all life on earth, fossil-fuel companies currently receive approximately $500 billion per year in subsidies (as estimated by the IEA). They use part of this vast sum to conduct advertising campaigns to convince the public that anthropogenic climate change is not real. If we turn on our television sets, almost nothing that we see informs us of the true predicament of human society and the biosphere. Programs, like Top Gear, promote automobile use. Programs depicting ordinary life show omnipresent motor cars and holiday air travel. There is nothing to remind us that we must rapidly renounce the use of fossil fuels. A further betrayal by the mainstream media can be seen in their massive free coverage of US presidential candidate Donald Trump, who is an infamous climate-change denier. Despite the misinformation we receive from the mainstream media, we must remember our urgent duty to leave fossil fuels in the ground. If threats to the future are taken into account, the price of these fuels is prohibitive. The author was part of a group that shared the 1995 Nobel Peace Prize for their work in organizing the Pugwash Conferences on Science and World Affairs. He is associate professor emeritus at the HC Ørsted Institute, University of Copenhagen. He was chairman of both the Danish National Pugwash Group and the Danish Peace Academy. He is the author of numerous books and articles both on scientific topics and on broader social questions. His most recent book is Civilization’s Crisis in the 21st Century.
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HERE the country is now, saddled with more than P6 trillion in debt, started when the late President Corazon Cojuangco-Aquino naïvely swallowed hook, line and sinker the structural adjustment policy of the International Monetary Fund (IMF)-World Bank, a prescription that consequently and continuously caused the country to sink deeper in debt.
Jun B. Vallecera
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Stuck in debt
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Greed and wrong economic policies W
By Cecilio T. Arillo
Structural adjustment is a set of policies created and imposed by the misguided free-market economists of the IMF-World Bank on debtor countries in order to access concessional loans. This policy usually comes in the form of trade liberalization, privatization, devaluation, tax reform, deficit spending and floating-rate exchange. Relatedly, a free-market economy is an IMF-World Bank economic and political doctrine intended to regulate a freely competitive market of goods and services with a minimum of governmental intervention and regulation. Congress (both the Senate and the House) cannot escape responsibility for the country’s economic debacle, particularly on the issue of debt servicing, by deliberately abdicating its power over the purse in two specific instances. In fact, it is in this area of public responsibility and accountability that betrayal appeared to have been flagrantly committed by most of the country’s politicians over the past 30 years. Under the 1987 Aquino Constitution, Congress is the only branch in the government empowered to authorize and appropriate funds, two distinct congressional functions, to service debts and spur economic growth. First, it failed to amend or repeal Presidential Decree (PD) 1177, the Marcos budget law that automatically services the country’s foreign and domestic debts on the sole discretion of the finance secretary and the governor of the central bank. Second, it failed to abrogate the Aquino-issued Proclamation 50 and 50-A, which dovetailed PD 1177 and authorized President Aquino, without interference from Congress, to assume all the foreign
The idea of rehabilitating the GFIs was the brainchild of then Finance Secretary Jaime Ongpin and Central Bank Governor Jose “Jobo” Fernandez (both deceased, the former committed suicide and the latter died of cancer) who reasoned that “it will not be a good picture for the government if the GFIs were closed due to unpaid debts.”
and domestic liabilities incurred by the Ferdinand E. Marcos regime and unjustly dumped them on the shoulders of the Filipino people. Proclamation 50 and 50-A, signed respectively by President Aquino on December 15, 1986, and June 8, 1987, legitimized her economic policy of privatization, which initially mandated the rehabilitation of debtridden government financial institutions (GFIs), such as the Philippine National Bank and the Development Bank of the Philippines. The idea of rehabilitating the GFIs was the brainchild of then-Finance Secretary Jaime V. Ongpin and Central Bank Governor Jose Fernandez (both deceased, the former committed suicide and the latter died of cancer) who reasoned that “it will not be a good picture for the government if the GFIs were closed due to unpaid debts.” In other words, they were more concerned about the country’s image abroad than the povertystricken people. Later, then-Justice Secretary and now Sen. Franklin M. Drilon upheld the proclamations when some lawmakers questioned their use, stating that the “law vests upon the Chief Executive the discretion whether to undertake such assumption [of debts]”...even in a situation where the “value of assets transferred is less than the amount of liabilities assumed.” Curiously, Drilon issued this legal opinion after the Aquino Constitution took effect in 1987, explicitly mandating Congress to assume full control over the disposition of budgetary liabilities. Congress should have asserted on this mandate and
called the attention of the Executive department or brought the issue to the Supreme Court for resolution or decision. From 1965, the beginning of the Marcos regime, the country’s foreign debt rose from $599 million to $26.3 billion when Aquino assumed the presidency. But because of this inaction or culpable violation of the Constitution, the foreign debt swelled from Marcos’s $26.3 billion in 1985, to Aquino’s $34.8 billion in 1992. Between 1986 and 1992, the end of the Aquino era, the government spent $23 billion in debt servicing, representing an average of 52.8 percent of the yearly national budget and leaving less than half for social and economic services. The same period when the government paid $23 billion, the country gained only $14 billion in new money, leading to a total net-resource outflow of $9 billion. Consequently, the Aquino administration resorted to domestic borrowings at high-interest rates to fill up the gap and, thus, sank the country deeper in debt, all because Aquino had continuously adhered to the IMF-World Bank’s structural adjustment prescription and monitoring (for good housekeeping) policy. According to Freedom from Debt Coalition (FDC), a credible private research and think-tank organization, borrowing at high-interest rates from domestic lenders during Aquino’s term meant the government gave the Filipino elite, at a time of severe economic crisis, an easy way of earning profits through short-term portfolio investments in Treasury bills. This cozy investment, said FDC, ensured the high incomes of the elites, who did not have to risk capital in productive ventures for as long as the government, was there to pay them excessively high interest. As a result, the lack of mediumand long-term capital investments for manufacturing and infrastructure development, the usual source of revenue and employment, brought down the economy. To reach the writer, e-mail cecilio.arillo@ gmail.com
firstname.lastname@example.org • Sunday, September 11, 2016 A5
The in-com(pe)team T
HERE is no way to paint the President’s insulting remarks in flattering colors. It was a gaffe plain and period. And the Philippines lost a golden opportunity.
By Teddy Locsin Jr.
Now, you may think we lost the opportunity for our President to make a good, which is to say a namby-pamby, impression at his diplomatic debut. You would be wrong to think that, if a good diplomatic debut is toeing the usual line of Asean, which cannot decide if it collectively wants to be the indentured servant class of China—which pays well and punishes severely—or of the United States, which does not pay much and pays no serious heed to this neck of the global woods. First the gaffe and who is responsible. The gaffe was insulting to the US President. There is no way around that. It was totally unprovoked by him. Barack Obama, believe it or not, did not wipe out the American Indians. His people had a hard enough time running away from the Ku Klux Klan. And the insult was over human rights, which was the very last thing Mr. Duterte wanted to be brought up at the summit. And yet, it was he who brought it up. And he wasn’t even there yet. He was still in Manila. That guaranteed the American would win an argument the Ameri-
can was not even making. Obama’s reaction was cold, elegant and contemptuous. In his official matter-of-fact tone, he said, “I have asked my staff if a meeting with the Philippine President would still be productive.” Then, without missing a beat, he turned to other topics. That was all we merited: the opinion of staff. Who is to blame? President Duterte’s staff, his communications team. Why did he have to deliver a going-away speech? He’s coming back anyway. Then he will have something to talk about. Nobody does the departure thing anymore. And to whom was he saying good-bye? Us! My God, we live with this guy. Why should he have to tell us where he is going and why? We know already. It is in the news. And so he delivered an unnecessary speech where he might have accidentally telegraphed serious diplomatic punches, if he had any in mind. After the speech, his in-com-peteam asked the media if there were any questions. And yet, his in-compe-team had earlier suggested “better no questions.” One of the ques-
tions inevitably was, “What will you do if you get a tongue-lashing over human rights from Obama?” Naturally, Mr. Duterte flew off the handle. Nobody takes a tonguelashing from anyone, except maybe his wife, if she caught him. And at that, it was a “hypodermical,” as some in the media would say. President Duterte lost the chance precisely to avoid the very subject he would scorn at the summit. Yet, there he was, still on the ground, running smack into the very subject he wanted to avoid, from the worst possible angle and in the worst possible light. If Obama had asked him about human rights, it would not have been aggressively, but with the elegant, not to say vapid phrasing of diplomacy. That would have had even Mobotu Sese Seko agreeing wholeheartedly to whatever Obama was saying. Even dictators agree with human rights. It is just their definition of human that is so restrictive. Human is everyone who agrees with them; not human is everyone who does not. With his outburst, President Duterte lost the stage, even before stepping on it, for far more important and pressing issues, such as the role
Commemorating 9/11 with the gift of life By Dr. Gwen Pang
Head, International Federation of the Red Cross Country Cluster
EIJING, China—There are a few events in the history of the world where all of humanity is collectively transfixed in horror as it unfolds, just as it was on September 11, 2001, when America was attacked by terrorists. Fifteen years ago today, the sight of a commercial jetliner slamming into one of the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York City was seen by millions around the world, as it was broadcasted live on network television. Just a few minutes earlier, another commercial plane had hit the other tower, sending plumes of smoke out of the windows of the skyscraper. At the time, no one knew what had just happened; there was much confusion. On that clear, sunshiny day in America, right after the first airplane hit, almost everyone thought it had been a tragic navigational accident. As the media began training
their cameras toward the burning skyscraper, it would soon become abundantly clear the United States was being attacked by terrorists. When the second plane hit the other tower, everyone knew this was no ordinary accident. The terrifying images of people leaping out of the tall buildings into the air and plummeting to their deaths, choosing to die that way rather than being incinerated alive, was a collective trauma experienced not just by the people of the United States, but everyone else on this planet. As the twin towers collapsed one after the other, with thousands of people still trapped inside and subsequently buried in tons of concrete, steel and glass, the heartbreak of that day was complete. That scores of heroic first-responders, paramedics, police officers and firefighters also died trying to save innocent civilians inside the World Trade Center only added to the grief and horror of 9/11.
Taming North Korea I
N conducting yet another nuclear test on Friday, North Korea has escalated its confrontation with the rest of the world. The regime celebrated, saying it had made progress in miniaturizing nukes and attaching warheads to missiles. South Korea’s president rightly called it an act of “maniacal recklessness.”
It’s clear, if it wasn’t already, that North Korea is no longer just looking for bribes: Its goal is to build a full-fledged nuclear capability. The only prudent response is to harden sanctions in a way that finally gets the country’s attention. Kim Jong Un’s regime has been blasting ordnance left and right this
year. It conducted a nuclear test in January, launched a long-range rocket in February, fired a ballistic missile off a submarine in August and sent three more hurtling toward Japan earlier this week. These alarming pyrotechnics are pushing East Asia toward a new era of instability. They raise the likelihood that Japan and South Korea may seek their own nuclear deterrent, even as tensions with China rise over plans to install missile defenses in the region. They increase the chances of a clash that would draw in the world’s two
of the Philippines as the only country with recognized rights instead of mere claims in the South China Sea. He could have scorned a commitment to the rest of Asean, which is hostage to Chinese power because of common frontiers. Meanwhile, he could been defiant of China. He could have walked out of the summit like Nehru out of a nonaligned conference—stand alone act on a stage of pygmies: the only country able to deal with China on the basis of legal equality. Instead, the Asean Summit became for the Philippines about the last thing any Asean member will talk about: Their sorrier records of extrajudicial killings and outright state-sponsored terrorism. We were the only real democracy in that summit. What we lost there was the chance to make history with a diplomatic debut that formally, elegantly and substantively made a virtue out of our geography: Too far from the United States, but still a safe distance away from China. Instead, what we achieved was exactly what we feared—an Asean Summit that defined us extrajudicially; and indeed, extraterritorially—because he was still here.
When the dust cleared, nearly 3,000 people were dead, including those who died at the Pentagon, another site hit by terrorists on that fateful day. It was on that day when the age of modern global terrorism truly began. The world before 9/11 was a vastly different place than the one we are living in now. Ultimately, 9/11 spawned two wars, in Afghanistan and in Iraq, where today a sectarian conflict is raging and has become a training ground for actual and wouldbe terrorists. According to the 2015 Global Terrorism Index, which is published by the Institute for Economics and Peace, the top 5 countries affected most by terrorism are Iraq, Afghanistan, Nigeria, Pakistan and Syria. All over the world, about 32,685 people were killed by terrorists in 2014, and the above-mentioned countries were where 78 percent of all deaths and 57 percent of all
attacks occurred. In Iraq alone, 9,929 terrorist fatalities have been recorded that year. Two terrorist groups—the Islamic State in Iraq and Levant (ISIL) and Boko Haram—are jointly responsible for 51 percent of all global fatalities from claimed terrorist attacks, according to the report. In the Philippines, which was ranked No. 11 on the Global Terrorism Index, authorities have recently declared a state of national emergency due to the bombing in Davao City, which resulted in the death of 14 Filipinos and injuries to many others. Abu Sayyaf, which has sworn allegiance to ISIL, has claimed responsibility for the Davao bombing, while the families of the fatalities and the survivors are left to grapple with the tragedy. In the face of this callousness to fellow human beings, the rest of us can only respond by fighting evil with goodness. The only way to combat darkness is by shining
the light of compassion, kindness and generosity in our respective communities. In the United States, 9/11 has evolved into the Americans’ largest annual day of charitable engagement, according to the American Red Cross. Each year, tens of millions of Americans and many others in 150 countries observe September 11 by performing good deeds that help others. Instead of succumbing to fear and hate, they have turned a national tragedy into a force of good in the world. And all across the Red Cross/Red Crescent movement, that is what we aspire to achieve—to give the gift of life. With acts as simple as giving blood to the Red Cross so that there is an adequate supply for those who need it, we can commemorate the events of 9/11 in a positive way and do our share in making sure that humanity triumphs over those who seek to destroy it.
leading powers. And they bring North Korea ever closer to its goal of being able to reach the continental US with a nuclear-tipped missile. North Korea is likely exaggerating its abilities—it wouldn’t be the first time—but its weaponry is improving, and this alone ought to concentrate minds. Are there any sanctions left to deploy? Yes. The United Nations was already mulling over stiffer penalties. It could designate more of North Korea’s companies for sanctions and more of its operatives for travel and trade black-
lists. The US Congress should tighten restrictions on traveling to the North, and the White House should press other countries to stop hiring North Korean laborers whose remittances support the regime. The Treasury should intensify its efforts to cut off the North’s banks and their enablers from the world financial system. This means building a case against Chinese financial institutions, which North Korea uses to procure illicit missile and nuclear technology. China’s support in sanctioning those banks would be invaluable, obviously—
but the US should go ahead even if that cannot be secured. China doesn’t want the North Korean regime to collapse, but it ought to see advantages in imposing some restraint. It should help to enforce sanctions already in place, and move against the North’s covert weapons trade. Preventing the North from learning how to miniaturize and deliver its weapons should be as urgent a priority for China as it is for the US. China and the US may not be natural allies, but they have a shared interest in taming the world’s worst regime.
US could pay a high price for suing the Saudis I
T was hardly a surprise that the House unanimously passed a bill supported by the families of September 11 victims just before the 15th anniversary of the attack.
Unfortunately, law is more likely to make the US vulnerable to unlimited lawsuits by its enemies. President Barack Obama should stick to his promise to reject it and, ideally, Congress will come to its senses and not try to override the veto.
While the bill doesn’t mention any nation specifically, its purpose is clearly to allow US citizens to sue Saudi Arabia for its alleged involvement in the September 11 attacks. The Saudis have long been sponsors of extremist Islam, but evidence tying them to actual perpetrators of the 2001 attacks is circumstantial at best. The release of the so-called 28 pages from the congressional investigation of September 11 disappointed those certain
it contained proof of Saudi involvement. It’s not even clear that the act would be much help in any lawsuits: It contains a provision giving the Executive branch the power to stay any proceeding so long as it “is engaged in good faith discussions with the foreign state defendant concerning the resolution of the claims against the foreign state.” It is abundantly clear, by contrast, that the bill would undermine the
long-standing principle of sovereign immunity, under which such disputes are resolved between nations, not in courts. The unraveling of this doctrine makes any nation vulnerable to suits by the citizens of another—and no state will be more vulnerable than the US. If this principle is abandoned, it’s a good bet that anti-American lawsuits will flourish not just in hostile states, like Iran—where, in fact, the US has
been found guilty many times in judgments not enforceable under sovereign immunity—but almost certainly in Pakistan, Syria, Yemen and other countries where US counterterrorism efforts have mistakenly killed civilians. Moreover, in addition to the potential monetary costs, parties in civil suits are often given wide powers of discovery, potentially allowing them access to state secrets. Bloomberg View
A6 Sunday, September 11, 2016
Only 13 percent of Yolanda victims in Tacloban resettled
By Marvyn N. Benaning | Correspondent
UT of the 14,433 families victimized by Supertyphoon Yolanda (international code name Haiyan) in 2013, only 13 percent have been relocated.
Most of those relocated still complain about the lack of utilities, job opportunities and their tenurial security as shelter beneficiaries. These 14,433 families are just 40 percent of the total number of disaster victims who need to be resettled by the government inasmuch as they have been barred from rebuilding their homes in high-risk zones. In a news conference, typhoon survivors, local government officials and advocates also reiterated the need to improve water access and sanitation in resettlement sites. The news briefing was held under the auspices of the Philippine Legislators Committee on Population and Development (PLCPD), which has
been working with various groups to build disaster-ready communities in the areas devastated by Yolanda. “It is high time that a law be passed to provide a national framework on resilient human settlements and adequate housing in order to address these problems and harmonize all existing policies on housing and integrate standards for resilience,” PLCPD Executive Director Romeo Dongeto said. “Until now, those of us who have resettled in northern Tacloban still do not have access to potable water. The city government sends water trucks twice a week, but the supply is not enough,” lamented Algina Lacaba, secretary of the Coalition
of Yolanda Survivors Association of Tacloban (CYSAT). The Tacloban City government admitted that water scarcity has been a problem even before Yolanda struck. “For northern Tacloban, the problem is that there is no viable source of groundwater in most of the area. At the same time, the Leyte Metropolitan Water District (LMWD) has imposed a one subdivision, one meter policy, which effectively deprives northern Tacloban of water supply,” Tacloban Community Affairs Officer Tedence Japson said. For her part, Philippine Network of Rural Development Institutes (PhilNet-RDI) operations Manager Emynita Tapiru said the lack of water only worsened malnutrition and poverty, forced many children to skip school and even led to conflicts over who should get priority on the reduced water supply. “Due to the lack of water, many families are forced to buy water elsewhere. This diminishes their capacity to buy food. Children’s opportunity to go to school is also reduced because they are asked by their parents to cue and fetch water when the water trucks come,” Tapiru explained. “ Worse, t he mothers often quarrel with their husbands because they have to look all day for water that they can bring home and their spouses complain that there is no cooked rice when they get back home
from work,” she noted. Lacaba also bared the bad condition of toilets, adding that “whenever it rains, there is a flood, and water spills from our toilet bowls. The foul smell from the toilet bowls also comes out of our kitchen sinks. We’re afraid that all of us would get sick pretty soon if this is not addressed.” “Plans are under way to resettle more than 14,000 families in northern Tacloban. Unless a sustainable water-supply system is installed, and appropriate waste water-treatment facilities are put in place, people’s health, as well as mariculture-based livelihood, will continue to be at risk” explained Leah Payud, Oxfam’s Tacloban resettlement program manager. CYSAT and PhilNet-RDI called on the National Housing Authority (NHA) and its developers to improve the septic tanks for every household and to separate the storm drainage from the sewer lines. Both recommended that secondary wastewater-treatment facilities be installed and urged that houses be built using standard or stronger materials. The Tacloban City local government also asked the national government and Local Water Utilities Administration (LWUA) to facilitate the provision of water for the Yolanda survivors. It also asked for the release of the balance of the approved P527million budget for the construction of a water system in northern Tacloban, aside from the allocation of P116.6 million to build a centralized sewage system for the entire city.
Congressmen back measures to enhance capabilities of law-enforcement agencies By Jovee Marie N. dela Cruz @joveemarie
EMBERS of the House Comm it tee on Da ngerous Drugs have expressed their strong support for the anti-illegal-drugs campaign of the government by passing measures boosting the capabilities of lawenforcement agencies. In a recent hearing conducted by the committee, Independent Rep. Robert Ace S. Barbers of Surigao del Norte, the panel chairman, assured officials of the National Police, Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) and National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) that he would work on their budgetary needs. Barbers also said the committee will pass measures to strengthen their enforcement capabilities in support for their anti-illegal-drugs operations. “Rest assured that each of our committee members will always be there to support you. We will be on your side. We will join you in this war because all of us are potential victims of drug addicts and drug pushers,” Barbers said. “We will definitely give you what you need, as much as we can. We will provide you with the necessary tools with respect to laws that we will craft in the future or, perhaps, amend existing laws, and will also give you budgetary support,” he added. Barbers said the committee is open to new proposals that seek to amend existing laws, especially in the area of boosting the enforcement capabilities of the police, the NBI and the PDEA to stop the drug problem. So far, he said, there are 40 bills, four resolutions and four concurrent resolutions referred to the
committee as of August 31. In terms of budgetary support for law-enforcement agencies, Barbers said he will talk to House leaders concerned to push for the proposed budgets of lawenforcement agencies for next year for their anti-illegal-drugs operations. “We also want to help you on your budgetary needs, as we’ve seen your budget is meager. Rest assured we will talk to the appropriations committee when your budgetary proposals reach the plenary. We will also talk to Speaker [Pantaleon D.] Alvarez to provide for your budget so we will have enough ammunition against our enemies, who are the drug lords,” Barbers said. Barbers said Congress, the National Police and the PDEA may come up with an acceptable rate for the agencies’ budgetary proposals for their anti-illegaldrugs operations. Director Benjamin Magalong, National Police’s acting deputy chief for operations, said the force has proposed a P1-billion budget for its anti-illegal-drugs operations, while the PDEA is also seeking a P1-billion budget for next year. Babrers asked the law-enforcement agencies to submit their wish lists to the committee. “Maybe you can give us your wish list of your needs. We may not be able to solve all your problems, but we may be able to reduce or minimize them,” Barbers said. For the current budget of lawenforcement agencies for their anti-illegal-drugs operations, National Police officials said they were allotted P36 million, while the NBI has no budget for such in 2016 and only relies on fund assistance from the PDEA and the NBI director’s intelligence budget.
DOH gives award to Shell programs
HE Department of Health gave Shell companies in the Philippines the top award in the commercial establishment category in the agency’s Outstanding Healthy Lifestyle Advocacy Awards 2015. Programs for the promotion of healthy lifestyle among employees are among Shell’s innovative methods in advocating disease prevention, improving health conditions and promoting productivity in the workplace. The awards were given by the department to commend professional organizations in both the government and private sector, in recognition of their exemplary work in advocating disease prevention. The program also recognizes advocates who strive for better health and sound environment by encouraging lifestyle changes in the community. Shell bested other institutions with its unique Be Well & Resilience programs, which have demonstrated sustained and wider reach of implementation, and replicability with the interactive health-monitoring tool (bewellcheck.com) that communities and other institutions can adapt, among other criteria. Just like its campaigns on driver education, driving behavior and sustainable mobility, propagating health and productivity in the workplace is a primary concern for Shell, as it considers its people as its most important asset. “The overall strategy of the Be Well & Resilience programs is for the company to act as an enabler for employees to take control of their health by making healthy choices and sustaining lifestyle changes,” Shell Philippines Country Health Adviser Rose Rivera said. “Motivation—individually and as an organization—is really the key to achieve actual improvements in health conditions and productivity.” The Be Well & Resilience programs were initially rolled out in 2010 and, through the years, has evolved to become a purveyor of a healthier Shell. To date, Shell employees are now actively participating in the various Be Well program activities, from only 15 percent in 2010 to 98 percent in 2015. Employee membership in Be Well sports clubs have also increased from 5 percent to 20 percent. A significant 66 percent of employees reported that their stress levels decreased as a result of their participation, while 42 percent reported increase in their productivity score. Around 81 percent reported having their overall health in good, very good or excellent condition, from 34 percent before joining the challenge. Claudeth Mocon-Ciriaco
BRIEFING FOR NEW OFFICIAL
Private Infra Development Corp. (PIDC) President Mark Dumol (left) briefs Public Works Secretary Mark A. Villar (right) on the Tarlac-Pangasinan-La Union Expressway (TPLEx) project, portions of which opened to traffic in mid-2014. Now 67.3-kilometers long, TPLEx recently opened its Binalonan Exit, which is 10 minutes away from the Minor Basilica of Our Lady of Manaoag, a very popular pilgrimage site in Pangasinan. From Manila, pilgrims can now reach the basilica in two hours. Meanwhile, travel time between Manila and Baguio City has since been significantly reduced to three-and-a-half hours. PIDC, the operator of TPLEx, targets the opening of the Pozzorubio Exit by the first quarter of 2017 and the Rosario, La Union, Exit by the first quarter of 2018. By then, motorists will enjoy faster, safer and more convenient trip on the 88.7-km TPLEx.
Quezon PDC OKs P5.9-B investment plan By John Bello | Correspondent
UCENA CITY—The Quezon Provincial Development Council (PDC) has approved the Annual Investment Program (AIP) worth P5.9 billion, as the province was formally declared “conflict-manageable and ready for further development.” Gov. David Suarez, PDC chairman, described the signing as a “milestone” and thanked the Armed Forces and the police for the blood, sweat and tears spent for the province’s reaching the level of peace and security. “All we have to do is to sustain the declaration, now that we are investment-friendly and keep the momentum to ensure further the development of the province,” the governor said in his speech, after he led the signing of the memorandum of understanding for the declaration of the province as conflict-manageable and ready for further development with Brig. Gen. Amador Tabuga Jr., assis-
tant division commander of the 2nd Infantry Division of the Philippine Army, and Police Chief Supt. Valfrie Tabian, acting regional director of the Police Regional Office 4A. The signing of the declaration, held on Thursday at the Bulwagang Kalilayan, Governor’s Mansion Compound here, indicates that the province has now attained a stable peace-and-order situation withtheinsurgencyproblemposedbythe communist armed group under control, thus, it is deemed ready for economic advancement and development. Suarez, seated beside provincial administrator Rommel Edano and board members Ferdinand Talabong and Vincent Dominic Reyes at the head of the presidential table during the PDC full council meeting, also said the P5,971,661,000 AIP budget intended for the province’s priority development programs and projects are geared for the country’s move to federal system of government under President Duterte.
Editor: Jun Lomibao • email@example.com
Sunday, September 11, 2016 A7
SUBIDO SIZZLES FOR TIGERS By Joel Orellana
NIVERSITY of Santo Tomas (UST) roared back from a 15-point deficit and stunned University of the Easy (UE), 88-87, for its first win in Season 79 University Athletic Association of the Philippines (UAAP) men’s basketball tournament on Saturday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum. Renz Subido and Jamil Sheriff anchored the Growling Tigers fight back in the second half, but UST needed a couple of defensive stops in the closing minute as the Red Warriors tried to mount a comeback to no avail. Subido, a sophomore guard out of La Salle Zobel, tallied a career-high 26 points to lead the season hosts to nail their first win after losing to Ateneo de Manila in their opening game last week. Subido had a total of eight points in Season 78. Sheriff added 15 markers, while
skipper Louie Vigil chipped in 10. “Kahit nagkaproblema sa huli, at least naka-survive kami,” UST rookie Head Coach Boy Sablan said. “Alam kong puputok ‘yun [Subido]. Tamang time lang talaga hinihintay ni Renzo. Nahanap niya ngayon. Alam kong may magandang mangyayari sa kanya this year,” Sablan added. UE appeared to have control of the game after leading by as much as 15 points early in the second period before settling for a 47-39 halftime lead. Sheriff waxed hot in the third and led UST to a 30-17 quarter scoring to grab the lead at 69-64. It was Subido’s show in the early minutes of the final canto as he anchored a 10-4 exchange, highlighted by a four-point play, for a 79-68 cushion. The Growling Tigers were still holding an 86-77 lead, when Edison Batiller and Nick Abanto joined forces and pushed UE within two, 84-86, 1:49 left in the game.
PHL 2ND IN SANTI CUP
UPERT Zaragosa fired a five-under 67, but missed the individual crown by one, as the Philippines ended up third in the Putra Cup topped by Thailand for the third straight year at the TMCC Garden Course in Singapore late Friday. Zaragosa, the former national champion, failed to match his sizzling seven-under 65 in the third round, missing a couple of birdie chances in the rain-interrupted final round of the premier event in the South East Asia Amateur Golf Team Championship. Counting his back-to-back 71s in the first two rounds, Zaragosa pooled a 274, one shot behind Kammalas Namuangruk, who also closed out with a 67 for a 273 to anchor the Thais’ romp in the four-day championship. With Napong Sriparsit also shooting a 67 and Sadom Kaewkanjana adding a 70, Thailand rallied with a solid 204 and completed its come-from-behind win with an 828, edging Singapore, which faltered with a 212 for an 831. Joshua Ho shot a 66 for the hosts, but veteran campaigner Gregory Foo could only match par 72 and one from Joshua Shou and Marc Ong’s 74s counted in the four-to-play, three-to-count format event. The Philippines, whose campaign was sponsored by the MVP Sports Foundation and the Philippine Sports Commission and sanctioned by the National Golf Association of the Philippines, wound up with an 852 after a 208 with Ryan Monsalve and Weiwei Gao backing Zaragosa’s 67 with 70 and 71, respectively. Malaysia placed fourth with an 853 after a 214, while Hong Kong made a 208 for an 862, followed by Myanmar (220-863) and Indonesia (218-876). The PHL’s junior team, on the other hand, pooled a 142 for a 571 and finished second to Thailand, which had a 551 after a 138, in the 10th Lion City Cup. Aidric Chan and Ira Alido each fired 71s, while Jolo Magcalayo didn’t count with a 74. Indonesia placed third in the 54-hole tournament with a 575 after a 144, followed by Singapore (150-587), Malaysia (143-592), Hong Kong (146-593) and Myanmar (160-616). Alido also finished third in individual competition with a 282, which included a 69 and two 71s, with Ekpharit Wu of Thailand taking the gold with a 275 after a 69 and teammate Kousuke Hamamoto placing second with a 277 after a 69. Earlier, the girls squad of Yuka Saso, Harmie Constantino and Bernice Olivarez-Ilas finished second to Thailand in the Santi Cup and placed third in the Kartini Cup on a team built around Nicole Abelar, Junia Gabasa and Kristine Torralba.
University of Santo Tomas guard Marvin Lee (center) collars the rebound, as Edison Batiller (left) and Nick Abanto of University of the East look on. STEPHANIE TUMAMPOS
Gilas 5 BOWS TO INDIA IN ASIA CHALLENGE T HE young Gilas Pilipinas squad failed to sustain its hot start and bowed to No. 53-ranked India, 83-91, at the start of the International Basketball Federation (Fiba) Asia Challenge on Saturday morning in Tehran, Iran. The No. 27-ranked Philippines, composed of college stars, erected a 25-16 first-quarter lead after Ed Daquiaog’s buzzer-beat trey. But India used a strong second period, outscoring the Filipinos, 31-21, to take a 4746 halftime lead. India continued to roll in the third period and had a 21-12 scoring advantage to carry a 68-58 advantage going to the fourth period. The Philippines 5, mentored by Josh Reyes, son of former Gilas Coach Chot, actually managed to crawl back in the game and even took a 75-74 lead on CJ Perez’s undergoal stab with 4:40 remaining. But India responded with a 14-4 run to reclaim the lead at 88-79, over a minute left in the game. The Filipinos never had a serious run since then. Mac Belo led Gilas 5.0 with 21 points, while Daquiaog added 15 markers. Russel Escoto and Michael Tolomia chipped in 11 and 10 points, respectively, for the Filipinos who will face Chinese Taipei on Sunday in a crucial Group B match. Amjyot Singh led India with 24 points and 18 rebounds while Vishesh Bhriguvanshi added 20 markers. Amritpal
Singh chipped in 16 points. The trio played all the 40 minutes for India. India used its height advantage and had a 55-47 lead in rebounds. Other opening day winners were South Korea over Japan, 80-73, in Group D; host Iran defeated Qatar, 81-49, in Group C while China walloped Jordan, 94-76, in Group A. Joel Orellana
as they grabbed a commanding 21-9 lead and never looked back to force another set. “The only thing that I could do, just by experience, was to dig in the bench and bring in players that have no statistics because, of course, they’ve [Iran] been studying us,” the Italian coach said. “I knew they didn’t know EJ and Maika, so we slightly changed the game plan and we absolutely dominated the third set.” But the Iranians regained their composure in the fourth set and took a 9-5 lead. The PHL VI managed to level the score at 9-apiece but the Iranians continued to move away with a 13-10 cushion. Laure embarked another run followed by Lindsay Stalzer’s three straight points to give Foton a precarious 14-13 lead. The host team was still at the helm, 18-16, before the visiting team made the move. Sarmayeh Bank led Iran’s six straight points to take a 22-18 advantage and never relinquished that lead to finish off the Torndoes. It was Foton’s fifth straight loss in the tournament since winning its opening game against Pocari Sweat of Hong Kong. Stalzer topped all scorers with 18 points, while Laure finished with 12 points. Skipper Jaja Santiago had 11 markers. “Off game ‘yung iba so inisip ko na gagamitin ako kasi kailangan ng mga players. Prinove ko na kaya kong gawin ’yung ginagawan ng ibang players,” Laure said. Lance Agcaoili
LASKA needed a strong finish to waylay Phoenix, 103-87, to move closer for a quarterfinal seat in the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) Governors’ Cup on Saturday at the Mall of Asia Arena. The Aces used a balanced attack to slow down the streaking Fuel Masters and notched their third straight win to tie their victims at 5-5 win-loss mark. Calvin Abueva posted a huge double-double game of 18 points and 21 rebounds, while LeDontae Henon added 15 markers and 20 boards to lead Alaska’s win. RJ Jazul had a team-high 19 points, while Sonny Thoss and Chris Banchero netted 11 apiece for Head Coach Alex Compton. Jvee Casio also hit double figures with 10 points. “I feel that we got out team back. If that’s the way we play, I think we have a chance against anybody,” Compton said. Eugene Phelps was the lone Phoenix player in double figures, with 34 points to go along with his 24 rebounds, while Simon Enciso and Josh Urbiztondo chipped in nine markers each. The Fuel Masters were still in the game after Norbert Torres hit a three-pointer to push his team within striking distance, 77-82, 8:07 left in the game. But the Aces unloaded a decisive 15-3 run capped to take the game for good, 97-80, 3:28 remaining. Phoenix had no answer since then to saw its three-game winning streak snapped by Alaska. The victory of the Aces officially eliminated the Star and GlobalPort in the hunt for the last quarterfinal slot and gave Barangay Ginebra San Miguel a free ride to the top four for the twice-to-beat advantage in the quarterfinal stage. Joel Orellana
Gilas 5-foot-10 guard Ed Daquiaog (left) tries to stop the attempt of 6-foot-8 Amjyot Singh. COURTESY OF FIBA.COM
TORNADOES FALL TO IRANIANS
IÑAN CITY—Foton Pilipinas’s bid for a respectable finish here dimmed after bowing to Sarmayeh Bank of Iran, 18-25, 21-25, 25-12, 25-22, in their fifth to eighth classification stage match in the 2016 Asian Volleyball Confederation (AVC) Asian Women’s Club Championship on Saturday at the Alonte Sports Arena. The Tornadoes failed to achieve their highest possible place in the tournament as they faced a more composed and matured Iranians in a match that lasted for 104 minutes. “I’m disappointed in this game, not on the things that turned out [in this campaign],” Foton Head Coach Fabio Menta said. “This [Iran] team is a national team and we showed that we can match a strong national team, like Iran, with more techniques that we have for a long while. So I’m not disappointed on the whole thing, the goal [fifth place] was disappointing.” The seasoned Italian coach of Foton rued on their lethargic first two sets that that put them deeper early in the game. Down by two sets to nothing, Foton Pilipinas regrouped in the third set as Menta used his bench players, led by EJ Laure, who had seven points to lead the third-set rampage of Foton. The Tornadoes, anchored by Laure, Angeli Araneta and Maika Ortiz, who took the spots of import Ariel Usher and guest players Aby Maraño and Jovelyn Gonzaga, injected some life
UST committed a pair of turnovers in their next plays, but Batiller came up empty in two trips. A split by Renz Palma pushed UE within one, 85-86, 42.2 seconds remaining. Marvin Lee was sent to the 15-foot line by Palma in the next play and split his charities, 87-85, 36.1 ticks left. Again, Batiller had an ill-advised threepoint attempt that was way off the mark, while Paul Varilla’s own triple missed target, leading to the split by Regie Boy Basibas, 88-85, 3.8 seconds left. UE’s Edgar Charcos tried to a desperation heave but his attempt was way off the target, although Palma scored on a putback to peg the final score. Batiller and Abanto each had 15 points for the Red Warriors, who dropped to 0-2. In the women’s play, Love Sto. Domingo had 20 points and 13 rebounds as UE (1-1) overwhelmed UST (0-2), 74-57, while Ma. Antonia Wong came through with 11 points and 13 rebounds to lead La Salle (2-0) to a 65-46 win over UP (0-2).
Balanced scoring leads Alaska to much-needed win
Pinoy woodpushers absorb twin losses Foton’s Jaja Santiago (right) soars to spike the ball against Shekoufeh Safari of Iran. ALYSA SALEN
HE Philippines was dealt a pair of painful losses, as its men’s team fell to Italy, 1.5-2.5, and its women’s squad succumbed to a 1-3 setback at the hands of eighth seed Hungary, which sent them tumbling down the standings after seven rounds of the 42nd World Chess Olympiad in Baku, Azerbaijan, on Friday night. Up 1.5-0 after Grandmaster (GM) Julio Catalino Sadorra drew with GM Daniele Vocaturo on top board and GM Eugene Torre downed GM Axel Rombaldoni on board three, the Filipinos couldn’t complete the win, as GM John Paul Gomez and Rogelio Barcenilla Jr. lost to GMs Danyyil Dvirnyy and Sabino Brunello on boards two and four, respectively. Women’s International Master (WIM)
Janelle Mae Frayna, for her part, was winning against GM Hoang Thanh Trang, a Vietnamese emigre, before a blunder late in the game sent her to crashing to her first defeat of the tournament. It also deprived the Filipinas a shock 2-2 draw, after Jan Jodilyn Fronda stunned IM Szidonia Lazarne Vajda on second board. Christy Lamiel Bernales was handily beaten by Women’s Grandmaster (WGM) Ticia Gara on board three, while Catherine Secopito had a drawish position against International Master Anita Gara on board four, but she, too, couldn’t hold and lost it. The women’s squad fell out of the top 10 and into the top 20, along with a group with nine points.
Cena steals limelight from Big Show
ORLD Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) superstar John Cena gave his fans a night to remember when he finished fellow star Big Show with an Attitude Adjustment (AA) move in the sold-out WWE Live Manila on Friday night at the Mall of Asia Arena, Pasay City. The 15-time champion rallied back after anxious moments, when the 441-pound Big Show quickly dominated the early minutes with his superior size and power. Cena, wanting to give his 7-foot opponent some punishing, got the momentum when Big Show tried to maneuver for a splash but fell
terribly after the second rope snapped. The 39-year-old Cena then found the unconscious Big Show and fought his way back en route to his AA and a three-count from the referee. In the main event, Kevin Owens survived a Triple Threat match against Seth Rollins and Sami Zayn to retain the WWE Universal Championship belt. Owens, a 32-year-old professional wrestler from Canada, gave Rollins and Zayn, his oldfriend-turned-enemy, a hard time inside the ring when he used his slick moves to remain the longest-reigning universal champion of WWE. Ramon Rafael Bonilla
A8 Sunday, September 11, 2016
Editor: Jun Lomibao • firstname.lastname@example.org
Djokovic to face Wawrinka in U.S. Open final
NOVAK VS STAN N EW YORK—For quite a while, Novak Djokovic’s opponent in the US Open semifinals, Gael Monfils, looked as if he didn’t want to win—or even be there at all. That premeditated “great strategy” of hoping to lull the No. 1 seed and defending champion into complacency and mistakes, as Monfils described it later, worked briefly, yet, did not prevent a two-set deficit. So he transformed back into his entertaining, athletic self. A sweat-soaked Djokovic sought help from a trainer for aches in both shoulders, and what was no contest suddenly became one. Monfils forced a fourth set, and Djokovic ripped off his white shirt angrily a la “The Incredible Hulk.” The ultimate outcome was only briefly in the balance, though. Djokovic regained the upper hand, as he so often does, reaching his 21st Grand Slam final and seventh at the US Open with an eventful and, at times, bizarre 6-3, 6-2, 3-6, 6-2 victory over Monfils on Friday. “Well, it was a strange match,” said Djokovic, who will face No. 3 Stan Wawrinka in Sunday’s final, “as it always is, I guess, when you play Gael, who is a very unpredictable player.” Never more so than on this muggy afternoon, with the temperature at 90 degrees and the humidity above 50 percent. Monfils, now 0-13
against Djokovic, spent most of his news conference defending his unusual approach and said he knew beforehand he might try it. On ESPN’s telecast, John McEnroe blasted the 10th-seeded Frenchman for lack of effort. The Arthur Ashe Stadium crowd jeered him. “First question is, like, ‘You’re not competing?’ Yes, I’m competing,” Monfils said, cursing for emphasis. “I made a sign to my coach [to] say, ‘OK, I’m going to Plan B.’” Djokovic had three set points while serving at 5-1, 40-love, and Monfils transitioned into something that, at first blush, appeared to be “tanking”—losing on purpose, for who knows what reason—but which he explained afterward was the tennis equivalent of Muhammad Ali’s boxing “rope-a-dope,” absorbing someone else’s best shots and pretending to not be interested in attacking. Instead of his usual crouch preparing to return serves, Monfils casually stood upright at the baseline, without a worry in the world, looking like someone waiting to place his takeout espresso order. During points, Monfils would hit slices or make halfhearted, half-swinging strokes, then occasionally wallop a 100-meter-per-hour passing shot. “For sure, people are not really ready to see that,” Monfils said. “Definitely, I try to get in his head, try to create something new for him to see.”
Somehow, the tactic was effective, for a short while, anyway. “I was completely caught offguard,” Djokovic acknowledged. Miscue after miscue arrived from Djokovic, and Monfils won three games in a row, before eventually dropping a set for the first time all tournament.
Serbia’s Novak Djokovic celebrates after defeating Gael Monfils of France in their semifinals of the US Open. AP
“I thought, at times, that he was maybe behaving a little bit—for some terms and judgments—unacceptable,” Djokovic said. “But I guess that was part of his tactics. If he said that you have to believe him, I guess.” Djokovic will try for his third US Open championship and 13th major trophy overall against Wawrinka, whose first final at Flushing Meadows came via a 4-6, 7-5, 6-4, 6-2 victory over No. 6 Kei Nishikori that lasted more than three hours and finished with the roof shut. Djokovic has won 19 of 23 previous meetings, but Wawrinka did win their 2015 French Open final for his second Grand Slam title. Wawrinka was down a set and a break against Nishikori, who, eventually, faded in the heat and mugginess. Wawrinka got so sweaty his racket flew out of his hand on one point, but he seemed to grow sturdier as the match wore on. At the start, Wawrinka said, Nishikori “was always dictating. I was feeling uncomfortable on the court. He was coming at the net.... I just tried to, little by little, play a little bit better, a little bit faster, a little bit heavier. I tried to make him run.”
Wawrinka has spent nearly twice as long on court as Djokovic has so far, a little under 18 hours versus a little under nine hours. That’s because Djokovic enjoyed the easiest path to a major semifinal in the nearly half-century of the Open era: Three of his first five foes pulled out of because of injuries. Then came this two-and-ahalf-hour miniseries, topping them all for oddness. In the second set, Monfils lost five consecutive games, and limped afterward. Soon, Djokovic led 2-0 in the third, breaking on a double-fault that drew boos and whistles. All over but the shouting, right? Nope. In a blink, Monfils awoke. Hours before the match, Djokovic clutched at his back during a practice session in Ashe. Behind 5-2 in the third, Djokovic got his left shoulder massaged. Later, it was time for help with the right shoulder. Asked what health worries he might have, Djokovic replied, “Thankfully, it’s behind me. So I don’t have any concerns.” In the late going, Monfils was leaning on his racket between points. More examples of playing possum? Perhaps. But Djokovic showed his own signs of distress in the tough conditions. After all of that, Djokovic plays on Sunday for his third Grand Slam championship of 2016. He won the Australian Open in January, and the French Open in June—when the theatrics were at a relative minimum by Friday’s standards. AP
Froome wins ITT, reduces overall lead of Quintana
ALPE, Spain—Chris Froome took a big bite into Nairo Quintana’s lead of the Spanish Vuelta by winning an individual time trial on Friday with two days remaining in the race. The Tour de France champion reduced Quintana’s lead of three minutes and 37 seconds, entering the 19th stage to 1:21 before the penultimate and decisive day. Froome, who won bronze in the time trial at last month’s Olympic Games, sped through the 37-kilometer (22.9mile) route from Javea and Calpe, along the Mediterranean coast in 46 minutes and 33 seconds. It was Froome’s second win of this year’s Vuelta. “We have one more day of racing tomorrow. We will see,” Froome said. “Quintana still has more than a minute of advantage, but we will keep fighting.” Quintana’s Movistar teammate Jonathan Castroviejo was second across the line, 44 seconds behind Froome. Quintana crossed with the 11th best time. The Colombian climber, a two-time runner-up to Froome at the Tour, is looking to add the Vuelta to his 2014 Giro d’ Italia title. “I had a good time trial, but Froome had a much better one. He really flew and got a better time than we had anticipated,” Quintana said. “The important thing is that I still have good legs to defend my lead tomorrow.” Three-time Vuelta winner Alberto Contador moved past Esteban Chaves into third place at almost four minutes off Quintana’s lead. Saturday’s 20th stage is a mountainous 193.2km (120-mile) ride traversing three category-two ascents from Benidorm to a special-category finish at the Alto de Aitana summit. The three-week race concludes with the traditional finish in Madrid on Sunday.
A.I., SHAQ LEAD EMOTIONAL H.O.F. CEREMONY
PRINGFIELD, Massachusetts—When Shaquille O’Neal was 10 years old, his father made a prediction. Friday night when his son became a Hall of Famer, it was realized. Shaq and Allen Iverson headlined the 10-member Class of 2016 enshrined into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. One of the most star-packed classes in recent memory, it also featured international star Yao Ming, Women’s National Basketball Association great Sheryl Swoopes, Coach Tom Izzo and owner Jerry Reinsdorf, an architect in the Michael Jordan-led Chicago Bulls championship teams of the 1990s. “If I know my father, he’s up there arguing with Wilt [Chamberlain] that his son is the best big man in the game,” Shaq said. Posthumous honorees were 27-year National Basketball Association (NBA) referee Darell Garretson; John McLendon, the first African-American coach in a professional league; Zelmo Beaty, the former NBA and ABA star who led Prairie View to a National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics title in 1962; and Cumberland Posey, who is also a member of the Baseball Hall of Fame. Shaq was an instant box-office draw during his career because of his mammoth frame and rim-shaking dunks. But he also exhibited a personality that was as playful was it was engaging. He showed off all of it on Friday. He had the final speech of the night, a humorous dissertation that spanned his long journey in the sport. His speech had serious moments, like thanking his parents, Phil Harrison and Lucille O’Neal, for giving him the discipline and drive that drove his NBA dream. But he also tossed in light moments. He thanked former Lakers teammate Kobe Bryant for helping him win three NBA titles, “but also for getting me pushed off the team and traded to Miami.” Before host Ahmad Rashad could even introduce Iverson, the first mention of his name started a roar of cheers throughout the assembled audience. Dressed in all black, former Most Valuable Player known as “A.I.,” blew kisses, as tears began to form in his eyes. “Thank God for loving me and blessing me,” Iverson said, “to be the man that I am and having no regrets for the man that I am. A man that my family loves, my teammates love and my fans love.” Fighting tears throughout, Iverson thanked former Georgetown Coach John Thompson “for saving my life.” “[After] the incident happened in high school and all that was taken away...no other schools would recruit me anymore,” Iverson recalled. “My mom went to Georgetown and
THE 2016 class of inductees into the Basketball Hall of Fame Shaquille O’Neal (left) helps Yao Ming of China with his jacket during a news conference at the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. AP
begged him to give me a chance. And he did.” He said he later left Georgetown only as “an OK basketball player.” “But once I started to listen to Larry Brown and take constructive criticism, I learned how much of a great, great coach that he really is.... That’s when I became an MVP.” Iverson saved his final thank you for wife Tawanna. “You’re just the best to me,” he said. “I want you to walk around and be proud of yourself that you are a Hall of Famer.” Two of the themes on the night were family and journeys. That was the essence of Swoopes’s speech, who was thankful of her path from tiny Brownsfield, Texas, and that her cancer-stricken mother, Louise, was able to see it. “What a ride it’s been,” she said. The 7-foot-6 Yao’s arrival from China to the NBA in 2002 instantly helped bring the game to a broader international audience. He was Friday’s first inductee, an honor which he joked that should have gone to Iverson. “You know why? Because I need more practice than him,” Yao said to applause from the crowd and a laugh from Iverson.
Yao also thanked his early mentors in China, former NBA Commissioner David Stern for his vision in wanting Yao to play in the league, as well his first teammates on the Houston Rockets. He also singled former NBA coaches, including Rudy Tomjonavich and Jeff Van Gundy. “I will always consider you my family,” Yao said. “I am Texan and Houston Rocket for life.” Izzo has become the face of the blue-collar Michigan State team while leading it to seven Final Fours and the National Collegiate Athletic Association championship in 2000. He thanked his parents, Carl and Dorothy, for being his first mentors. The 90-year-old Dorothy was in attendance, but Carl passed away last September. Izzo briefly got choked up as he spoke of his father, who he said instilled in him a work ethic that remains with him today. “The seven Final Fours and championship are just frosting on the cake,” Izzo said. Reinsdorf, the longtime Bulls owner, chronicled what led him to purchase the Bulls in 1984. It was a move he said legendary New York Yankees Coach George Steinbrenner panned, telling him he’d never make any money. AP