Defensor vows support for IRRI’s ‘Dapitsaka’

Defensor vows support for IRRI’s ‘Dapitsaka’

JULIAN Lapitan (2nd from right), manager of the National Programs Relations Office of the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) and Elias Sandig of the Provincial Agriculture Office visit Gov. Arthur Defensor Sr. Wednesday. (ECGarcia)


THERE is hope that the participatory action research project of the Internal Rice Research Institute (IRRI) and the Iloilo provincial government dubbed “Dapitsaka” (Dapitay sa Kaumhan) initiated in year 2000 will be given new breath under the administration of Gov. Arthur Defensor Sr.

US raises PHL sugar quota anew by over 19,000 MT

US raises PHL sugar quota anew by over 19,000 MT

THE United States has given Filipino sugar producers 19,648 metric tons (MT) more of quota to fill, bringing to 213,333 MT the total volume of sugar they can ship off to American consumers this year, the Sugar Regulatory Administration said Tuesday.

SRA officials said the local sugar industry can meet the higher demand.

Some 140,850 MT of sugar have been exported to the US this year and 52,835 MT are about to be shipped out.

The country also has 25,000 MT of export quality “D” sugar ready for export.

December 2011 is the new deadline for shipping sugar to the world market after the SRA extended it by three months.

With the SRA decision also allowing producers of domestic “B” sugar to export some of their output, local prices of sugar have been stable at the P58 to P60 range.

Trabaho sa Plaza Job Fairs

Trabaho sa Plaza Job Fairs

By: Lilibeth A. French

MAJOR plazas of Iloilo City will become venues for jobseekers, unemployed, newly graduates and displaced overseas Filipino workers to have access to employment opportunities.

The Iloilo City Public Employment Service Office has expanded the access of Ilonggos to job openings and opportunities through its “Trabaho sa Plaza” jobs fair which will be conducted in the major plazas of the six city districts.

PESO Manager Alan Zaldivar said the initiative is part of the efforts of the city government to reach out to residents who are looking for jobs or who are unemployed, so that they could participate in employment opportunities under their Project JED (Jobs, Employment and Development.)

NFA to buy, store 200,000 MT of corn

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NFA to buy, store 200,000 MT of corn

AN expected increase in corn harvests this year has prompted the National Food Authority (NFA) to plan buying 200,000 metric tons (MT) of corn from farmers and store that harvest until the next cropping year.

In May, the Bureau of Agricultural Statistics said both palay and corn harvests are expected to improve in the second quarter of 2011.

The move also ensures that farmers get fair prices for their produce, the NFA explained.

“For yellow corn, we’re looking at ‘surplus areas,’ or those that has surplus production such as Region II, at the same time we will focus on white-corn eating areas,” said National Corn program director Edilberto de Luna Tuesday.

Iloilo gears up for farm mechanization

Iloilo gears up for farm mechanization

By: TWVillavert

RICE farming in Iloilo province is expected to double in efficiency with the implementation of the government’s rice mechanization program.

Dr. Ildefonso T. Toledo, Iloilo Provincial Agriculture Office head, said multi-million peso worth of farm equipment like hand tractors, four-wheel drive tractors, threshers, combined harvesters and flat bed dryers will be extended to the farmers here under the rice mechanization program.

Toledo said farmer associations and members are qualified to avail of the program.

“A 70-30 enabling scheme will help push this rice mechanization program which is anchored on food security and self-sufficiency,” said Dr. Toledo.

The government will shoulder 70% of the equipment’s value, while the remaining 30% will be paid for by the farmer or farmers’ association.

Index tobacco taxes to inflation — Tañada

Index tobacco taxes to inflation — Tañada

DEPUTY House Speaker Lorenzo ‘Erin’ R. Tañada III cautioned against the passage of an “incomplete measure” on tobacco tax reform that would only lift price classification freeze because such taxes also need to be indexed to inflation.

Indexing to inflation tobacco taxes simply means that when prices of common commodities, such as food, go up, then so will taxes on tobacco products increase.

Tañada explained that without indexation, sin taxes will eventually be eroded by inflation while tobacco products would be made affordable, thereby defeating the very purpose of taxing cigarettes to discourage smoking.

“The need to reform the current sin tax law and to simplify the administration of tobacco taxes is urgent, but we also need to ensure that the reforms are comprehensive,” Tañada said.

“The removal of the price classification freeze is definitely a big step toward correcting the flaws in the sin tax law — and this has cost the government billions worth of revenues in the past years. But tobacco taxes should also be indexed to inflation so that collections can keep pace with the rise of cigarette prices,” he pointed out.

Construction projects fall in Q1 – NSO

Construction projects fall in Q1 – NSO

THE number of construction projects in the country fell in the year’s first quarter, according to a report from the National Statistics Office Monday.

NSO said that the total number of approved building permits in the January to March period was 28, 347, a 5.5-percent decrease from 29,992 construction projects during the same period last year.

The lower number of construction projects was owing to the 11.9-percent slide in the number of total residential construction, which dipped 11.9 percent to 20, 784. On the other hand, non-residential construction for the period grew 17.4 percent to 3,495 from 2,978 during the same quarter of 2010.

Also, the combined approved building permits for additions, alterations and repairs improved 18.7 percent to 4,068.

“Total value of construction during the first quarter of 2011 surged 11.6 percent to P52.8 billion from P47.3 billion recorded during the same quarter of 2010,” the NSO said.

Iloilo province sets early palay harvest

Iloilo province sets early palay harvest THE province of Iloilo is expecting early harvest of palay this end of July or first week of August, Iloilo provincial agriculture officer Dr. Ildefonso Toledo said. Toledo said that because of the continuous rain, farmers in Iloilo planted early in April instead of May, the start of the […]

Sun Business Pro Fair

Sun Business Pro Fair

SUN CELLULAR, the country’s leader in mobile telecommunications, is now your Pro-Business partner as it launches Sun Business Pro Fair on July 15, 2011 at Waterfront Hotel, Lahug, Cebu.

Business owners who are seeking for more innovative ways to reinvent themselves and more rewarding ways to gain leverage over their competitors will certainly take interest in the event. Whether one is a small and developing business or a medium and more established enterprise, there’s always room to grow especially in Cebu’s dynamic and competitive business atmosphere.

Sun Business Pro Fair will provide those who shall attend with exciting freebies and packages, free access to short business seminars that shall be headed by renowned business personalities Edward Gaisano, Armando Bartolome and Iliac Diaz, scrumptious snacks, and take home materials that will be given away. Moreover, you’ll be given the opportunity to build networks and make friends with other business owners all throughout the event.

NSO: 1 in 5 OFWs working in S. Arabia

NSO: 1 in 5 OFWs

working in S. Arabia


ROUGHLY one-fifth of all overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) worldwide toil in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, according to the National Statistics Office (NSO) 2010 Survey of Overseas Filipinos.

The results were released as the government and overseas employment agencies prepare for the implementation of the “Saudization” policy by Saudi authorities on September 10.

Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) figures on overseas remittances show that earnings sent from Saudi Arabia totaled $1.54 billion last year and $491.89 million from January to April this year. The 2010 sum represents about 9 percent of all monies OFWs remitted.

The survey said that, from April to September last year, there were 2 million Filipino workers deployed all over the globe.

“The sheer volume of workers working temporarily overseas indicates the lack of employment opportunities and suggests that domestic investments and entrepreneurship are being held back,” according to the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) via the Philippine Development Plan 2010-2016 of the Aquino Administration.

Developers eye agro- industrial park in Iloilo

Developers eye agro-

industrial park in Iloilo

TWO developers are eyeing to establish an agro-industrial park within the convergence areas covered by the Jalaur River Multi-Purpose Project II (JRMP II).

This was disclosed by Ricardo Provido, chairman of the Regional Agri-Fisheries Council (RAFC), during the culminating activity of the 35th anniversary celebration of the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP) and the second year of implementation of the CARP extension with reforms (CARPER) in Iloilo.

“This can become an eco-zone but it will be based on the processing of agri-fishery products. This is what they call the agri-fishery development park, it is an eco-zone,” Provido said.

Provido said the developers, which he did not name at this time, were very specific that “they wanted to be in the convergence area; hopefully it will be within the Jalaur River Basin.”

He said the project site makes delivery of raw materials and finished products for shipping easy because it can be facilitated without traffic.

“It can immediately go to the coastal road and direct to the seaport or it can go directly to the airport,” he added.

Other factors that prodded the developers to invest are the availability of water and power.

SEC wants disclosures on foreign equity enhanced

SEC wants disclosures on foreign equity enhanced



THE Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) may begin requiring additional disclosures from companies following a Supreme Court ruling on foreign ownership, an SEC official said on Thursday.

In an interview on the sidelines of the “2009 Corporate Governance Trends in the 100 Largest Publicly Listed Companies” in the country, SEC chair Teresita Herbosa said they would have to require certain firms to disclose in detail the classes of shares that they are issuing stockholders.

“If the decision becomes final, we would have to require the [affected] companies to disclose whether or not their preferred shares are voting or non-voting, and we will compute accordingly,” Herbosa said.

Some of these affected companies are in public utilities, education, natural resources, and in nationalized and partly nationalized activities.

The new requirement stems from a recent ruling by the SC saying that the Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co. (PLDT) may have breached Section 11, Article 12 of the Charter, which mandates the 60-40 ownership rule in a Philippine corporation.

The high court ruled that the term “capital” in the provision refers only to common stocks — which gives shareholders voting rights to elect board directors — which, when strictly enforced, elevates foreign ownership in PLDT to 64 percent breaching the 40 percent ceiling.