Dec 112017

Fitch Ratings raised the Philippines’ sovereign rating by one level, from BBB- to BBB, with a stable outlook, amid favorable economic conditions and planned tax reform.

The upgrade of the Philippines’ sovereign rating is important as it would bring down the costs of overseas borrowing for Filipino companies. Also, it will bring down the cost of capital for the system and eventually reflect in terms of lower credit cost.

Any international credit rating agency upgrading the sovereign rating clearly shows the faith they have on the country’s economic policies.”This will also have an indirect positive effect on corporates when they borrow abroad. It will have a positive impact on corporate borrowing.

Fitch noted that “strong and consistent macroeconomic performance has continued, underpinned by sound policies that are supporting high and sustainable growth rates.”
“Investor sentiment has also remained strong, which is evident from solid domestic demand and inflows of foreign direct investment,” it added.

According to Fitch, investor confidence has not been impacted by the country’s anti-drug war.

Fitch sees real gross domestic product (GDP) growth of 6.8% in 2018 and 2019, which it noted would maintain the Philippines’ place among the fastest-growing economies in the Asia-Pacific region.

Fitch took the Philippines’ proposed tax reform program into account and expects the country’s fiscal profile to improve as a result of it.

Both the Senate and the House of Representatives have passed their versions of the first tax reform package and are now holding bicameral talks. The tax reform package could be signed into law by the end of the year.

The move by Fitch was “a significant vote of confidence,” Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno said in a mobile-phone text message, while Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez said there’s likely to be more credit-rating upgrades in years to come as the government reforms the tax system, improves infrastructure and attracts more investment.

“Our fiscal position is much stronger now on account of administrative measures we are implementing to improve revenue collection,” Dominguez said in a text message. “Our growth prospects are also brighter compared with our neighbors and peers.”

Dec 092017

World-class basketball is coming back to the Philippines! Basketball-crazy Filipinos will finally witness the sports’ biggest tournament on their home soil as the Philippines, together with Japan and Indonesia, bagged the right to host the 2023 FIBA World Cup. The three-country bid beat out the Argentina-Uruguay bid after the host candidates made their final pitch before the FIBA Central Board in Switzerland on Saturday. “We did it! The Philippines will host 2023 FIBA World Cup. God bless us,” Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) chairman emeritus Manny V. Pangilinan gladly announced the good news on his Twitter account@iamMVP. READ: Gilas bags Silver in FIBA Asia, Castro still Asia’s best point guard It will mark the first time that the FIBA World Cup will be played in multiple countries. Carrying the theme #PlayLouderIn2023, the Philippines-Japan-Indonesia pitch centered on bringing the tournament to “the fastest growing region in the world, where our combined population of 500 million are ready to embrace the sport of basketball.” READ: 12-year-old Kristine Cayabyab earns praise from Lebron The Philippines’ successful bid came two years after its #PUSO2019 campaign for the 2019 FIBA World Cup fell short against China.

Dec 072017
4 Online Shopping Sites That’ll Save You From Headaches This Christmas Season

Image Via Traffic tends to be bad during the holidays, but the current congestion in Manila is especially brutal this 2017. Drives that used to take 30 minutes take twice (even triple) the time nowdays, which makes shopping for gifts an ardous task. There is an alternative: online shopping. And while buying stuff from the web in the comforts of your own home has existed long before 2017, there’s more secure options than ever before this 2017. Lazada There’s never been a better time to shop in Lazada, as the pioneering e-commerce site is currently holding their grand Christmas sale until the 12th. There’s great deals to be had on there, as the company has a excellent selection of electronics, toys and other consumer goods on offer. Best part is that you don’t need a credit card to pay for your purchases: Lazada accepts COD payments for goods bought in the site. Zalora Zalora is the sister company of Lazada, and primarily sells shoes, clothes and other fashion accessories. Like Lazada, Zalora has a large selection of branded goods, and will soon be conducting a sale of their own starting Dec. 12th. There’s a myriad of options available for payment and shipping as well, including COD or cash on delivery. Amazon has always been the go-to online shopping destination of the US, and a recent change to its importation and shipping policy will make it worth your while to shop in the website. Amazon no longer charges importation Read More …

Dec 052017

South African beauty Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters, Miss Universe 2017 is in the country to show the world why “Its More Fun in the Philippines.” She’s here to take part in the Department of Tourism’s four-day Miss Universe 2017 Winners Tour. Nel-Peters brought along last year’s winner, Iris Mittenaere. She rejoined her fellow candidates who arrived earlier, namely Miss Universe Great Britain 2017 Anna Burdzy, Miss Universe Singapore 2017 Manuela Bruntraeger, Miss Universe Canada 2017 Lauren Emily Howe, Miss Universe Russia 2017 Nicky Opheij, Miss Universe Italy 2017 Maria Polverino, Miss Universe Russia 2017 Ksenia Alexandrova, Miss Universe Spain 2017 Sofia del Prado and Miss Universe Malaysia 2017 Samantha James. Philippine representative Rachel Peters had also flown back home Monday and would be joining the candidates in upcoming events. It’s happening… The reigning #MissUniverse Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters, #MissUniverse 2016 Iris Mittenaere and some of this year’s contestants are heading to the Philippines! . . They’re looking forward to the incredible hospitality of Department of Tourism-Philippines @tourism_phl, seeing some of the 7,107 Islands, being a part of DOT’s Women Of Significance Gala Night, and the #MissUniverse Fashion Show. #ItsMoreFunInThePhilippines A post shared by Miss Universe (@missuniverse) on Dec 2, 2017 at 5:30pm PST The ladies will begin seeing the sights on Wednesday, beginning with a tour to of Manila’s iconic sites – Rizal Park and Intramuros. The contestants will then grace the Tourism Department’s Christmas party on December 7. On December 8, the candidates will head for the provinces. Nel-Peters will be touring Batanes, Read More …

Dec 042017
Why the Philippines will be an Economic Powerhouse by 2050

The Philippines will be one of the world’s powerful economies by 2050 – largely driven by its population growth, according to a report by professional services giant PwC. In its 2017 report “The long view: how will the global economic order change by 2050?” PwC ranked 32 of the largest economies in the world, accounting for around 85% of world GDP, by their projected global gross domestic product by purchasing power parity. PwC analysis pegs the growth potential of the Philippines at #19 with a projected GDP at PPP of $3.334 trillion. Read Related Story: 7 Good Reasons to do Business in the Philippines PwC used the PPP measure of how gross domestic product at purchasing power parity adjusts for price level differences across countries, providing a better measure of the volume of goods and services produced. The report notes that many of the current powerful economies will be replaced by emerging markets in 33 years time. The Philippines is projected to make one of the greatest moves up the rankings, from IMF’s 2016 estimates at 28th spot to 19th spot in the 2050 PwC analysis for projections. The Philippines is projected to have an average annual GDP growth rate from 2016 to 2050 at 4.3%. The PwC report shows how growth in many emerging economies like the Philippines will be supported by relatively fast-growing populations, boosting domestic demand and the size of the workforce. PwC asserts though that this will, however, need to be complemented with investment in education Read More …

Dec 022017

The Philippines remains a key investment destination in Asia. At the Euromoney Philippine Investment Forum, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Governor Nestor Espenilla Jr. said the country is still an attractive investment destination since the economic outlook remains strong with capital markets being deepened and developed, programs to improve infrastructure, and expansion of trade and industries. Espenilla said the government is on track to hit its 6.5-percent gross domestic product growth goal for this year, while 7.0 to 8.0 percent economic growth in the medium term is expected. “The Philippines today offers viable investment opportunities,” he noted. Read Related Story: Philippine Economy Sizzles in Q3 Growing 6.9%, of of Asia’s Best For Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) Director General Charito Plaza, foreign investors are keen on investing in the country, with its young workforce, competitive labor cost, and incentives given particularly by the agency. But she noted that aside from foreign investors, investments of local companies in PEZA are also robust. Plaza said about 22 percent of investments in PEZA were from Filipino companies, next only to Japanese firms which account 40 percent of total investments as the top investors in PEZA. Read Related Story: 7 Good Reasons to do Business in the Philippines Dow Chemical Country Director Roberto Batungbacal also echoed that some of the biggest investments in the country’s manufacturing sector came from local firms. “A lot of success in the manufacturing sector is FDI (foreign direct investments), but local players are drivers of growth,” said Batungbacal. “If Read More …

Dec 022017
A Practical Tip to Earn More Money this Christmas Season in the Philippines

Making money is always harder than saving. This age old bit of wisdom has allowed me to make more money consistently over the last few years. It might sound “simplistic” but if you do it consistently it has a big effect that will surprise you at the end of the year. The tactic is simple: Make a list of consumable items you regularly use like soap, toothpaste, deodorant, or shampoo. Buy them in bulk during major flash sales (like 20-50% off or buy-one-take-one deals) on Lazada, S&R, Watson’s or even SM Department Store. That’s it. This is real money that you get to “put back” into your pocket because you would have spent on these items at higher prices (SRP) anyway. The savings can be massive if you’re able to do this consistently across a wide range of daily consumables. Apart from shampoo, there’s toothpaste, soap, mouthwash, napkins, deodorant, toilet paper, cooking oil, canned goods, coffee, and even softdrinks (though I would suggest you stop drinking soda for health purposes). All of those taken together will make a big positive impact on your cash flow. More importantly doing this develops money mental discipline. You will be more cautious of your how you spend and this will ultimately help keep building your wealth so that you break away from “petsa de peligro”. This is pretty timely as there are a lot of upcoming sales. The most notable online sale is the Lazada 12.12 Christmas sale where you have a lot of Read More …

Nov 282017
Why You Need to Do Online Shopping this Christmas Season in the Philippines

Online Shopping is so underrated in the Philippines. A lot of us still prefer to go to the mall to buy what we want and need but we’re missing out when we don’t consider just shopping online. Here are the top 5 reasons why you should just focus on buying stuff from your smartphone or laptop this Holiday season versus making that trip to the mall. 1. Ang Sagwa ng Traffic mga Besh The most obvious reason is that you get to save yourself from the horrendous Christmas traffic. We all know that EDSA comes to a gruesome halt starting the Ber months because of the volume of cars that hit the road, especially the ones going to malls. You can save yourself the stress by just buying online. 2. Lots of Promos and Sales Exclusively Online There are more sales online than there are in physical stores. Lazada recently did a bunch of massive sales in November and the deals were ridiculously good, especially for electronics. Those are prices you don’t see in physical retail. They’re gearing up for another massive sale on December 12. Make sure you remember that date and make it a point to visit online stores on that day to see deals that you can take advantage of. 3. You can do COD even for International Items LAZADA, through their new investor and owner Alibaba, recently made the entire Alibaba Taobao collection available on their site. This is a fantastic range of affordable China-made products Read More …

Nov 282017
5 Ways to Make Money Using Digital and Tech in the Philippines

A monthly salary usually isn’t enough to have a comfortable life. This is the reason why having “rackets” or “side hustles” is important. It allows you to be more productive and it generates more money for you monthly versus just relying on your job. The money you earn is also dependent on how much time and effort you put into it. That said, here are 5 side hustles you can do today in the Philippines leveraging digital and technology. 1. Be a Grab or Uber Partner If you have a car, you can apply to be a Grab or Uber driver partner. The great thing about this is that you’re your own boss. You can bring the car out during your free time or during certain windows where Uber/Grab pays more. You just have to bear with the insane Manila traffic but at least you’re getting paid for it. How to Apply as an Uber Driver in the Philippines How to Apply as a Grab Driver in the Philippines 2.Buy Bitcoin This is probably the riskiest way to make more money. Given how Bitcoin’s value is skyrocketing right now, you can make a bet on it by buying a certain amount and just wait for it to appreciate. You can sell it later on when the value has grown significantly. By the way, there’s no minimum amount to buy Bitcoin. You can just start with 500 and learn about it. Once you’re more comfortable, you can start investing more. How Read More …

Nov 092017
7 Good Reasons to Do Business in the Philippines

The Philippines is no longer the sick man of Asia, and the world’s businesses know it. With the country breaking new records in the stock market, sustaining a rising GDP growth rate, receiving positive international forecasts, and iconic Filipino optimism translating to consumer confidence – global investments are pouring into the country, now touted as the Asian star in the global economy. GoodNewsPilipinas put together a list of good reasons why the world is bullish about business in this country, gathered from the best good business stories (so far) this year. HERE ARE 7 GOOD REASONS TO DO BUSINESS IN THE PHILIPPINES: 1. The Philippines is one of the best performing stock markets in Asia The local stock barometer gained by another 31.12 points, surpassing Tuesday’s record high of 8,312.93. Investors were euphoric at the prospects of the Philippine economy, as the Philippine stock market marked the breaking of new record highs. The Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE) Index finished in two successive record highs in October, boosting investor confidence amid expectations of tax overhaul and a plan for the liberalization of foreign ownership restrictions. 2. PHL economy growth pace has quickened and topped expectations Construction of new buildings [by Romeo Ranoco (REUTERS) via Daily News] The Philippine economy grew beyond the forecast of a Reuters poll, marking its Gross Domestic Product at 6.5 percent by midyear. Economists credit the rise of the country’s GDP to government-led construction boom and an extended rebound in the farm sector, and exports up nearly Read More …