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July 22-July 29, 2011



Aquino assures foreign business community reasonable and sound projects will continue PRESIDENT Aquino assured foreign business community Tuesday government projects that are reasonable and with economic benefits to the Filipino people will not be scrapped. The European Chamber of Commerce earlier voiced its concern saying that foreign investors were wary with policy changes that come with the new administration. They were asking for assurance that government will not carry out major policy changes in the long term. “I will ask the Secretary of Foreign Affairs to contact these foreign businesses and to assure them, that projects that are reasonable, that are sound, that have economic benefits and of value to our people, we will continue,” the President said. He noted that if these projects are

Foreign portfolio investments post $364M net inflow

NET inflow of foreign portfolio investments in May 2011 expanded 105.1 percent to US$ 364 million against year-ago’s US$ 177.54 million, data released by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) showed. Total inflows of hot money, dubbed as such due to the speed this investment comes in and out of the country, amounted to US$ 1.52 billion, 99 percent jump from yearago’s US$ 767.03 million. “The continued inflow of investment funds resulted from heightened investor interest in PSE-listed securities and fixed income investments,” the central bank said. Total outflows for the month, on the other hand, reached US$ 1.16 billion, higher than the US$ 589.49 million in May last year. However, net inflow last May was 46 percent lower than monthago’s US$ 673.8 million, data showed. Placements in shares listed with the Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE) last May reached US$ 886 million, representing 58 percent of the total and growing 79.9 percent over the US$ 492 million during same period last year. Bulk of the funds were placed in


based on a faulty premise, the government will not allow it to continue. The President mentioned the case of the Laguna Lake dredging project, where the government would spend P18 billion for a project that wouldn’t have much benefit especially to the lake shore communities.

“ I think, it is unarguable that their proposal to remove 12 million cubic meters and dumping it also within the same lake does not redound to an improvement of the water quality there… it shouldn’t cost the Filipino people P18.7 billion.” The perception of instability in forging business contracts in the Philippines is a major issue that holds back foreign investors from pouring in money in the Philippines, according to the European Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines. Hubert d’Aboville, president of the European Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines, said that businessmen often mention their concern for policy changes that new administrations undertake, which affect existing businesses.

ICTSI Davao unit doubles reefer capacity DAVAO Integrated Port Services & Stevedoring Corp. (DIPSSCOR), a subsidiary of International Container Terminal Services Inc. (ICTSI), has doubled the capacity of its reefer storage facility at Sasa Whart from 144 to 288 reefer containers. DIPSSCOR made the move to further improve the transport and storage of banana and other fruit cargo at the Sasa Wharf. Three racks were constructed and installed with 48 plugs of 440 volts each complete with power supply stations. Reefers may be stacked up to four tiers, with each rack having six rows and two sides. The racks also have back-up 1.5-megavolt amperes (MVA) power generators and 1.5-MVA step down transformers. Reefer facility operations are automated using state of the art digital technology. Two 45-ton capacity reach stackers were bought to complement increasing reefer container handling activities in the terminal.

food, beverage and tobacco companies at US$ 275 million; holding firms, US$ 182 million; property companies, US$ 122 million; banks, US$ 88 million; and telecommunication companies, US$ 82 million. Relatively, placements in pesodenominated government securities (GS) rose by 118.9 percent to US$ 513 million over year-ago’s US$ 234 million while investments in peso-denominated time deposits were more than thrice to US$ 127 million from US$ 40 million in May last year. Majority or about 89.4 percent of these investments came from Singapore, the United Kingdom, the United States, Hong Kong and Luxembourg. Meanwhile, total hot money inflow reached US$ 1 billion in the

first five months this year, 160.3 percent jump over the US$ 772 million in end-May last year. Total inflows amounted to US$ 7.8 billion or a growth of 119.6 percent over the US$ 3.5 billion in end-May 2010 while total outflows reached US$ 5.8 billion, or US$ 3 billion more than year-ago’s US$ 2.8 billion, most of which were withdrawals from interim peso deposits. Placements in PSE-listed shares amounted to US$ 4 billion, higher than the US$ 2.5 billion recorded last year and the bulk of these were placed in holding firms at US$ 1 billion; banks, US$ 679 million; telecommunication firms, US$ 520 million; utility firms, US$ 509 million; and property companies, US$ 497 million.

Press Release

South African port mulls cooperation pact with Subic Freeport SUBIC BAY FREEPORT — Delegates from South Africa’s Richards Bay Industrial Development Zone (RBDIZ) have expressed interest in forging a cooperation agreement between the South African port and the Subic Bay Freeport Zone. The port officials were accompanied in their trip to Subic Bay recently by South Africa’s Ambassador to the Philippines Agnes Nyamande-Pitso, who was already on her second visit here. The RBDIZ delegation was composed of Ike Nxedlana, chief executive officer; Zenele Zeka, executive manager; Mohlomi Nikopan, chief financial officer;

Hugo Lambrechts, counselor; and Keith Harvey, legal adviser and secretary. The group also visited the Clark Freeport in Pampanga, before touring the Subic Bay Freeport Zone. In Subic, the RBDIZ group was welcomed by incoming Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA) chairman Roberto Garcia and outgoing chairman Feliciano Salonga. They also received a briefing on Subic from Stefani Saño, SBMA senior deputy administrator for business development; Engineer Marcelino Sanqui, SBMA deputy administrator for public works and technical services.

Jobs generation: BoI okays P7-B new projects SEVEN projects, mostly mass housing ventures, with combined investments of over P7 billion and jobs generation prospects of over 2,500 were granted tax and fiscal incentives by the Board of Investments. Of the seven approved projects, six are engaged in mass housing developments with aggregate project cost of P7 billion account for the bulk of the BoI approvals. These projects are by SM Group (Light Residences Tower 2 and Green Residences), Camella Northpoint, Filinvest Land Inc., Community Naga and Suzuki Philippines Inc. The seventh project was Philgold Metallic Ore Inc., a new producer of gold concentrate with a yearly capacity of 360,000 metric tons (MT) or the equivalent to 2,343 ounces (oz.) of gold with an investment of P158.8 million. The project is located in the province of Surigao del Sur, which is considered as one of the country’s thirty (30) poorest provinces. To date, the 60 percent Filipino and 40 percent British owned firm has already explored 77 percent of the total contract areas of 449.49 hectares. With total resource estimate of 22,148,307 MT, mine life is expected to reach 62 years, far beyond the minimum 10 year requirement of the IPP specific guidelines, but is even estimated to last beyond as the remaining 23 percent of the areas is slated to be explored. “The people of Surigao particularly the surrounding communities of the area stand to benefit for the long-term given the duration of the project,” Trade Secretary and BOI Chair Gregory L. Domingo said. The firm intends to employ 114 people and will start commercial operations in December 2011. It will mine gold ore with a cut-off grade of 0.265 to 0.313 grams gold per ton. Its final product would be gold with 70-80 percent concentrate.

Asenso Pinoy entrepreneurship confab a big hit in Tarlac City Around 1,000 entrepreneurs, faculty and business students, and representatives of government and non-government institutions all over Luzon converged in the 2nd caravan of the Asenso Forum 2011: Entrepreneurship Conference Series last Tuesday, June 28, 2011 at the Cinema 4 of SM City Tarlac. Supported by its newest partners in promoting entrepreneurship in the country, the PLDT KaAsenso Sulong Minigosyo and SM City Tarlac, the half-day conference brought in Manila-based speakers who talked about various topics on entrepreneurship. Mr. John Calub, the Philippines’ no. 1 success coach and one of the country’s most sought-after motivational speakers, taught the audience on money magnet principles and other positive approaches to attract wealth. Ms. Amanda Burrell, Country Director of the British Council Philippines, presented the emerging social entrepreneurship trends in the world. She also shared to the participants its ongoing “I am a Changemaker Social Enterprise Business Plan Competition” which the youth can actively participate and win P 100,000 pesos as grant to fund the proposed winning social enterprise. Burrel was joined in by representatives from Good Foods Co., Mr. Ron Genato and Ms. Crystal Anieves who won last year’s competition. The crowd interacted with the panelists during a forum on youth enterpreneurship. Mr. Krishna Alejandrino and Ms. Stephanie Tan of the Junior Achievement of the Philippines presented the organization’s efforts in helping the youth develop an enterprising mindset through engaging them in minicorporation establishment and hands-on operations. Ms. Jacqueline Crisostomo of the AIESEC in the Philippines, a global organization which sends youths to various parts of the world to engage in relevant international immersions and exchanges, presented the significance of utilizing the skills and talents of every Filipino youth. Binalot Fiesta Foods President and CEO, Mr. Rommel Juan, who established the Dahon Foundation aimed at mobilizing and capacitating certain areas through providing them livelihood opportunities through banana leaves, shared his inputs on how to run a successful Corporate Resposibility Program. PLDT KaAsenso, the leading provider of connectivity and internet services in the country, wowed the audience on the latest I.T. convergence concepts designed to empower and support the micro and small entrepreneurs. Mr. Patrick Tang, Vice President for Retail Voice, discussed the unlimited business opportunities created by PLDT thru their KaAsenso bundle of services for the micro entrepreneurs. The conference was facilitated by AKPF’s Founder and Chairman, Mr. Francis L. Cardona, currently the Host/Producer of the multi-awarded Asenso Pinoy TV Show and Radio Program called ASENSO PINOY aired 10:30 a.m, every Saturday and 12:30p.m. every Sunday on NBN-4. “Entrepreneurship helps make a person become master of his own destiny” Cardona averred when asked why people should engage into entrepreneurship.” Entrepreneurs and Business students who participated in the Asenso Forum Entrepreneurship Conference Series, broadened their horizons to become successful in all their business endeavors” he added. Cardona was joined by dynamic Disc Jockies of Tarlac’s No. 1 station One FM 96.1, that spiced up the afternoon with open forums, raffles, and a lot of fun and insightful activities. The Luzon Conference which was co-presented by the PLDT KaAsenso, SM City Tarlac and the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry - Tarlac was the second leg of AKPF’s nationwide caravans following the overwhelming success of the Metro Manila Conference held at the Polytechnic University of the Philippines which was attended by some 1,200 participants. With the help of its learning partners The British Council, Junior Achievement of the Philippines, AIESEC in the Philippines, World Vision and World Fair Trade Organization (WFTO) Asia, this conference series aimed to inspire the participants from various areas of Luzon. AKPF is also scheduled to do its Visayas and Mindanao Conferences within the year. Asenso Forum 2011 at SM Tarlac was supported by media partners Entrepreneur Magazine, Business Mirror, Metro Express, Philippine Graphic Magazine, Spotlite Media, Asenso Pinoy, Radio Corporation of the Philippines; DZTC 828 Khz, DWXT 96.1 One FM, DZXL Manila 558 Khz, and local newspapers of Tarlac. The event was also made possible by its generous sponsors - Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority (TIEZA), Sundance Direct Sales, Binalot Fiesta Foods, Aficionado Germany Perfume, and Enchanted Kingdom, with the active support of Tarlac State University, Saver’s Appliance Depot, Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry-Tarlac, Tarlac Press and Radio Club and Litratista de Tarlac. Rolen Noe

South African envoy, business executives impressed with Clark developments CLARK FREEPORT, Pampanga — Republic of South Africa’s Ambassador to the Philippines Agnes Nyamande-Pitso has visited this Freeport and was impressed on the multi-dimensional developments being undertaken by Clark Development Corporation (CDC) to spruce up economic activities and generate employment opportunities. Pitso, who visited Clark for the second time, also brought with her officials of Richards Bay Industrial Development Zone (RBIDZ), an economic and deep-sea Freeport

Zone based in group Ernesto GorSouth Africa, led ospe briefed the by its Chief Execvisitors on CDC’s utive Officer Ike thrusts to generate Nxedlana. more investments CDC president and employment Felipe Antonio B. opportunities comRemollo met and plementing the ecoexchanged ideas nomic agenda of with the visiting President Benigno South African exC. Aquino III. ecutives on how Aerial view of Omni Aviation Corp., a top locator inside Clark Freeport. Gorospe inthe development formed Ambassaof their respective areas could com- Industrial Development Zone. dor Pitso and RBIDZ executives plement business activities at the During the meeting, CDC vice that Clark’s multi-dimensional deClark Freeport and Richards Bay president for business development velopments which include airport

expansion, infrastructure projects, leisure, entertainment and tourism programs, and improvement of vital utilities here, are the primary enablers of the CDC’s programs to enhance economic and employment activities. Nxedlana said they hope to learn from the development of the Clark Freeport Zone into a bustling economic center and business destination despite the devastation wrought by the eruption of Mt. Pinatubo in 1991 and the subsequent pullout of the 13th United States Air Force at the former Clark Air Base.

Metro Express page 7  

Metro Express No. 7 issue