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Bicameral showdown expected over final form of CITIRA

BICAMERAL debate on the proposed Corporate Income Tax and Incentives Rationalization Act (CITIRA) will have to contend with two issues -- the “sunset period” for weaning companies away from incentives, and the removal of taxation based on Gross Income Earned (GIE), a key legislator said.

Budget ‘insertion-free’ after funds assured for all districts

WAYS and Means committee chair and Albay 2nd District Representative Jose Ma. Clemente S. Salceda said Wednesday that each congressman will receive P100 million for their districts in the proposed P4.1-trillion 2020 national budget, adding that the budget process so far has been free of “insertions.”

Palace says president misspoke on ambush

PRESIDENT Rodrigo R. Duterte misspoke when he admitted ordering the ambush of a mayor last year, the presidential palace said yesterday.

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THE House of Representatives ways and means committee will hold hearings on the risks of Philippine offshore gaming operators (POGOs), many of whom employ Chinese nationals, and decide whether they should stay in the country, according to Albay Rep. Joey S. Salceda.

Brokers reject blame for BoC corruption

CUSTOMS BROKERS said they reject any attempts by the government to pin blame on them for corruption at the Bureau of Customs, with the industry saying it will “fight” to defend the livelihood of its nearly 12,000 licensed members and proposed instead that Malacañang focus on modernizing the bureau’s systems.

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PRESIDENT Rodrigo R. Duterte has designated Gerald Quitaleg Bantag as the new director-general of the Bureau of Corrections, replacing fired former prison chief Nicanor E. Faeldon, Malacañang said yesterday.

Lorenzana kept in dark about China-linked deal

DEFENSE Secretary Delfin N. Lorenzana was kept in the dark about a deal that would allow a Chinese-linked telecommunication company to build towers inside Philippine military camps.

Duterte, Xi favor bilateral deal on sea dispute

PRESIDENT Rodrigo R. Duterte frowns upon a “multilateral approach” to resolve the South China Sea dispute and will push for a deal with another claimant country, his spokesman said last week.

Author of first anti-drug law dies at 89

JESUS Marino “Rene” G. Espina, a former senator who authored the first anti-drug law in the Philippines, has passed away. He was 89.

Duterte won’t fire BuCor officials who acted in ‘good faith’

PRESIDENT Rodrigo R. Duterte said he will not fire the officials of the Bureau of Corrections (BuCor) who have acted “in good faith” in implementing the Good Conduct Time Allowance (GCTA) law.

Government center and business hub opens in Bataan

PRESIDENT Rodrigo R. Duterte on Thursday inaugurated the Bataan Government Center and Business Hub, also known as “The Bunker.”

EO presses state offices to spend on time

MALACAÑANG has moved to ensure that government offices spend within the fiscal year what they are given under the national budget, by formally adopting the cash budgeting system (CBS) starting this year through Executive Order No. 91.

Duterte hasn’t given up claim in South China Sea

PRESIDENT Rodrigo R. Duterte had not agreed to ignore an arbitration court ruling that voided China’s claims to more than 80% of the South China Sea, in exchange for a joint oil and gas exploration of the disputed waterway dangled by its neighbor, his spokesman said yesterday.

Duterte still trusts his Transportation chief

PRESIDENT Rodrigo R. Duterte still believes in his Transportation chief’s ability to handle the traffic gridlock in the capital and he sees no reason for him to quit, the presidential palace said yesterday.

Palace blames province for Chinese dredging

Malacañang on Thursday blamed the local government of Zambales for allowing illegal dredging operations by undocumented Chinese nationals in Masinloc town.

Duterte says Xi offered gas deal if 2016 Hague arbitration win...

PRESIDENT Rodrigo R. Duterte said his Chinese counterpart has offered Manila a controlling stake in a joint energy venture in the South China Sea, if it sets aside an international arbitral award that went against Beijing.

Duterte won’t beg for emergency traffic power

PRESIDENT Rodrigo R. Duterte on Tuesday said would not beg for emergency powers from Congress to solve the traffic gridlock in the capital.

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THE DEPARTMENT of Budget and Management (DBM) released P82.5 million to the Department of Agriculture (DA) on Tuesday to fund measures relating to the African Swine Fever (ASF) outbreak.

Duterte signs law expanding Bataan freeport territory

PRESIDENT Rodrigo R. Duterte has signed a measure expanding the territory of the Freeport Area of Bataan (FAB) to create more investment opportunities for the province.

Law creating Davao airport authority signed

PRESIDENT Rodrigo R. Duterte signed into law a measure creating the Davao International Airport Authority (DIAA) that will manage airports in the Davao Region, including the city’s Francisco Bangoy International Airport.

Duterte orders investigation of tabloid arson attack

PRESIDENT Rodrigo R. Duterte has ordered an investigation of the arson attack on the printing plant of a Manila-based tabloid, the presidential palace said yesterday, as it condemned the assault.

UP gets authority to sell properties to QC gov’t

PRESIDENT RODRIGO R. Duterte has signed a law authorizing the University of the Philippines (UP) to sell parcels of its land in Barangay Krus na Ligas to the Quezon City government for housing and urban settlement.

Philippines, Singapore sign cooperation deals

PRESIDENT Rodrigo R. Duterte and Singaporean President Halimah Yacob on Monday witnessed the signing of eight agreements between the two countries on infrastructure development and water resource management.

Duterte to take steps to stop corruption at national penitentiary

PRESIDENTIAL spokesperson and Chief Legal Counsel Salvador S. Panelo on Monday said President Rodrigo R. Duterte is determined to stop corruption at the national penitentiary and will be taking steps to achieve that.

Duterte risks ratings if prison chief is reappointed

PRESIDENT Rodrigo R. Duterte risks his popularity if he again transfers his sacked prison chief to another government post, analysts said.

Palace justifies transfer of convicts in De Lima case

THE presidential palace sees nothing wrong about President Rodrigo R. Duterte’s order to transfer 10 high-profile inmates to a Marine facility in Taguig.

President Duterte urged to hasten creation of Bangsamoro coordination body

THE Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) wants President Rodrigo R. Duterte to hasten the issuance of an order creating a body that will resolve issues between the national government and the newly established Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.

Palace sees next gov’t implementing IRA ruling

THE government will honor a Supreme Court ruling to expand payments to local governments from national government revenue starting 2022, rebuffing a request by governors to implement the new payment scheme earlier.

DA says hog quarantine holding, won’t comment on nature of disease

THE Department of Agriculture (DA) said Wednesday that its quarantine measures are working against an unspecified hog disease outbreak in unidentified parts of the country, amid fears that African Swine Fever (ASF)may have reached the Philippines.

‘Hoarders’ keeping rice prices firm despite farmgate palay plunge

The Department of Agriculture (DA) on Wednesday signaled a possible crackdown on rice hoarders, who are suspected because rice prices at retail are not drifting lower in line with the plunge in farmgate prices for palay, or unmilled rice.

Panelo says he met Sanchez kin two times

PRESIDENT RODRIGO R. Duterte’s spokesman yesterday said he met twice with the family of a convict for whom he had lawyered to discuss a request for executive clemency.

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THE SUPREME Court (SC) junked a lawyer’s petition seeking to legalize same-sex marriage in the country.

Dividend rates of gov’t banks slashed

PRESIDENT RODRIGO R. Duterte has issued an executive order (EO) reducing the dividend rates of Land Bank of the Philippines (LANDBANK) and Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP) to improve the banks’ capital position.

Duterte told to divulge details of China deals

AN OPPOSITION senator yesterday asked the presidential palace to disclose details of the agreements signed between the Philippines and China during President Rodrigo R. Duterte’s recent visit to Beijing.

Pasig River rehab agency now chaired by DENR

PRESIDENT RODRIGO R. Duterte has issued an executive order transferring the chairmanship of the Pasig River Rehabilitation Commission (PRRC) to the Department of Environment and Natural Resources from the Department of Budget and Management (DBM).

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1 New Zealander, 2 Chinese arrested THE NATIONAL Bureau of Investigation (NBI) recently arrested three foreigners, one from New Zealand who is wanted in his...

Duterte back after high-stakes China visit

PRESIDENT Rodrigo R. Duterte returned to Manila on Sunday after his fifth visit to China, where he raised the nation’s arbitral win that voided Beijing’s claim to more than 80% of the South China Sea.

Muslim schools in need of government support

ABOUT 90% of managers of Muslim schools, or madaris, in southern Philippines want government recognition and access to public funds, according to a study by the Institute for Autonomy and Governance (IAG).

6 deals signed during Duterte-Xi’s 8th meeting

PRESIDENT Rodrigo R. Duterte and Chinese President Xi Jinping on Thursday witnessed the signing of six bilateral agreements between the Philippines and China, including a $219-million loan for the Philippine National Railways (PNR) South Long Haul Project.

China refuses to recognize arbitral ruling

CHINESE President Xi Jinping on Thursday refused to recognize the 2016 arbitral ruling that voided China’s claims to more than 80% of the South China Sea even as his “old friend” Philippine President Rodrigo R. Duterte insisted that the decision was “final, binding and not subject to appeal.”

Duterte directs agencies to revert accounts payable to state coffers

PRESIDENT Rodrigo R. Duterte has issued an executive order directing all national government agencies to revert all accounts payable which “remain outstanding for at least two years and for which no actual claim has been filed” to the national coffers.

Duterte approves SkyJet franchise

PRESIDENT Rodrigo R. Duterte has signed into law a measure granting Magnum Air, Inc., the operator of SkyJet Airlines, a franchise to operate domestic and international flights.

China gets mixed PHL signals on apology

PHILIPPINE authorities issued conflicting signals about Chinese apology for the sinking of a Filipino fishing boat in June, with President Rodrigo R. Duterte’s spokesman and top diplomat disagreeing about the matter.

China can’t force Manila to ban POGO — envoy

CHINA has no authority to force the Philippines to ban online gambling involving Chinese nationals as part of its effort to crack down on a practice that supposedly causes illegal outflow of money, according to Philippine Ambassador to China Jose Santiago L. Sta. Romana.

New tourism destinations declared in Ilocos Sur and Nueva Ecija

FOUR SITES in Luzon — three in Ilocos Sur and one in Nueva Ecija — have been declared as new “tourist destinations” in the country and will be given priority for development.