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Philippines commits to 25pc corporate tax tate

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The Philippines Department of Finance has said the country will look to install a 25 percent corporate income tax rate on a broader base as part of the second phase of its tax reform process. Finance Undersecretary Karl Kendrick Chua explained that, presently, the country levies a 30 percent tax rate but it is applied across a narrow base, due ... Read More »

Customs seizes P33 million in smuggled goods

P33-M worth of various goods seized in two Manila ports. Photos from Bureau of Customs

MANILA, Philippines – The Bureau of Customs (BOC) seized P33 million worth of smuggled goods from the Port of Manila (POM) and the Manila International Container Port (MICP). At the POM, shipments declared as grocery items, glass cups, bottles, mugs, wheel rims, footwear, and general merchandise were found to contain misdeclared air freshener, toothpaste, shampoo, makeup, and vape without Food ... Read More »

Most Asean markets lower on trade woes, Philippines falls over 2%

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Most South East Asian shares traded on a weak note on Friday as investors assess the likely fallout of a global trade spat on corporate earnings, with the Philippines continuing its dismal run with an over 2 percent fall in early trade. German automotive maker Daimler late on Wednesday cut its 2018 profit forecast, as import tariffs on cars exported ... Read More »

Asean markets hit over trade spat; Philippines falls over 2.5%

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SINGAPORE: Southeast Asian stock markets fell on Monday, in line with broader Asia as a trade spat intensified between the world’s top two economies. Fears of a global trade war also added to pressure on oil prices. U.S. oil prices fell 1.9 percent following a 2.7 percent slump in the previous session. U.S. President Donald Trump said he was pushing ... Read More »

Gov’t employees among the ‘happiest’ at work: Jobstreet

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MANILA – Government workers are among the “happiest” types of employees, alongside those in the hospitality and restaurant sectors, recruitment portal Jobstreet said Monday. Asked to rate their “happiness” based on various criteria, state workers gave an average score of 4.85 points based on a scale of 1 to 7 with 7 as the highest, Jobstreet said, citing a study ... Read More »

Philippine police stormed a call centre, arrested 482 people they say were running a stock market scam on S.Africans

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Philippine police arrested an entire call centre it says was run by Israeli citizens involved in running a stock market scam – including on South Africans. One of the complaints that led to the raid came from South Africa, others from Australia. The company, International Branding Development Marketing, has been linked to iTrader, a foreign-exchange broker shut down in Israel. ... Read More »

AAK invests in plant in Philippines to expand in Asia

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KARLSHAMN, SWEDEN — AAK plans to invest in a customization plant in the Philippines that initially will focus on systems within special nutrition, chocolate and confectionery fats, and dairy. Eventually Karlshamn-based AAK expects to be able to supply systems within other segments as well from the plant, which should be operational by the end of the year. “This will strengthen ... Read More »

Philippines’ Banks to Pilot Ethereum-based Blockchain for Retail Payments

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Five rural banks in the Philippines will conduct a pilot of a real-time retail payments system on a blockchain developed by Ethereum startup Consensys. In a move to further financial inclusion and bring some 35 unbanked Filipinos into the financial system, the Union Bank of the Philippines (UnionBank) has picked five rural banks in Mindanao – the second largest island ... Read More »

Second tax package to create more jobs

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The proposed second tax reform package is expected to create not only more but also better jobs as the government would grant incentives to investments generating employment opportunities, the think tank Action for Economic Reforms said. “The government’s push to reform the fiscal incentive regime will encourage businesses to hire more people and upgrade the skills of existing workers by ... Read More »

Businessmen pledge $50 million to help rebuild Marawi

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MANILA – A group of businessmen hopes to invest as much as $50 million to help rebuild Marawi City and unlock its potential as a manufacturing hub, one of its leaders said Wednesday. The Bangsamoro Federal Business Council hopes to finish by June its master plan to redevelop 50 hectares of the city that was devastated by 5 months of ... Read More »

The Philippines is planning a $14b ‘pollution-free’ city that will be larger than Manhattan

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Manila, the hyper-dense capital of The Philippines, is known for its traffic jams. In a 2016 survey, navigation company Waze ranked Manila as having the “worst traffic on Earth.” The city’s reliance on cars also exacerbates its growing air-pollution problem. As a possible solution to Manila’s smog and gridlock, the country plans to build an entirely new, more sustainable city ... Read More »

Coal-reliant Philippines struggles to power up clean energy

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LAMAO – For Nestor Castro and the other residents of Lamao village, which sits near two coal-fired power plants and an oil refinery, the country’s shift to renewable energy cannot come soon enough. Not only would it lessen the pollution in their village in the northern Philippines, it could also mean cheaper electricity, Castro said. “Coal just adds to the ... Read More »

Philippines President Duterte orders lifting of Kuwait worker ban

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The Philippines lifted its ban on migrant workers heading to jobs in Kuwait, capping a diplomatic row sparked when a murdered Filipina maid was found in her employer’s freezer. The news comes days after Kuwait and the Philippines signed a deal to regulate and protect the hundreds of thousands of Filipinos who seek higher-paid employment in the wealthy Gulf state. ... Read More »

Finance pushes higher taxes on ‘sin products’

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Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III said the government will push through with its plan to further increase the excise taxes on alcoholic beverages and cigarettes, despite its impact on inflation. “It is the right thing to do. Just because you’re going to get a bad reaction, that doesn’t mean you are going to stop,” Dominguez said in a news briefing. ... Read More »

Economic growth meets forecasts; gov’t flags inflation ‘spoiler’

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MANILA – The economy grew 6.8 percent in the first 3 months of the year, meeting analysts’ expectations, but at the same time reflecting faster inflation that slowed consumer spending. Without the effects of inflation, real gross domestic product growth in the first quarter would have fallen “well within” the full-year goal of 7 to 8 percent, Socioeconomic Planning Secretary ... Read More »

New Customs director had recent run-in with Customs over illegal knives

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Newly appointed Guam Customs and Quarantine Agency Director Eric Palacios on March 27 tried to bring illegal knives into Guam through the airport, and the knives were seized by Customs, according to the agency’s spokeswoman. Palacios brought the items to the airport on a flight to Guam from the Philippines. “They’re regulated items,” according to spokeswoman Jessi Santos-Torres, who said ... Read More »

Philippine Government to Grant Tax Breaks to Cryptocurrency Companies in Economic Zones

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MANILA: Zone Authority (CEZA) which operates the economic zone, said, “We are about to license ten platforms for cryptocurrency exchange.” Companies inside economic zones can be involved in any aspect of cryptocurrency business, including commercial mining, providing blockchain technology-based financial services and hosting Initial Coin Offerings. Companies operating a cryptocurrency exchange, however, will be forced to trade the fiat into digital currency at ... Read More »

Philippine credit rating outlook to positive

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MANILA: Philippines’ credit rating from “stable” to “positive,” citing mainly the government’s policymaking that could further improve the country’s finances and economic growth. The upgraded outlook of the country’s current rating of “BBB,” which is one notch above the minimum investment grade, means there is a chance the rating could be upgraded in the coming months. “The positive outlook reflects ... Read More »

Philippines to allow cryptocurrency operators in economic zone

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MANILA:  The Philippines will allow 10 blockchain and virtual currency companies to operate in an economic zone to take advantage of tax perks while generating employment, a government official said on Wednesday. The companies would be the first virtual currency firms to operate in the Philippines after regulators legalised their entry into an economic zone in February, in contrast to ... Read More »

Tobacco firms chided for claiming excise tax will worsen due to smuggling

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MANILA: Tobacco companies were chided by various health groups for allegedly spreading unfounded claims that the rise in excise taxes on tobacco products will worsen the incidence of smuggling in the country. Insisting the public’s right to be provided with information on good health and wellness, HealthJustice Philippines and the Southeast Asia Tobacco Control Alliance (SEATCA) revealed that global evidence ... Read More »