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BIR projecting weak POGO revenue in 2021

THE Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) projected collections of P3.92 billion from Philippine Offshore Gaming Operators (POGOs) in 2021, based on the industry’s weak tax yield in January.

China to send 400,000 more CoronaVac shots

CHINA will donate 400,000 more doses of CoronaVac shots made by Sinovac Biotech Ltd., according to President Rodrigo R. Duterte, in a boost to the Philippine drive to vaccinate more of its most vulnerable population.

Manila to get 4.6M AstraZeneca doses in May, says WHO 

THE PHILIPPINES will take delivery of 4.58 million doses of coronavirus vaccines made by AstraZeneca Plc in May under a global initiative for equal access, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).

Nationwide round-up (03/04/21)

A House of Representatives panel has approved a proposed measure for the quarterly distribution of pension to indigent senior citizens instead of every six months.

Group warns of coronavirus variants’ spread

A RESEARCH team from the University of the Philippines has warned of rising coronavirus infections in Manila, the capital and nearby cities probably due to the spread of more contagious variants.

Philippines seeks Suu Kyi’s quick release after military coup

THE PHILIPPINES on Tuesday sought the immediate release of Myanmar leader Aung San Suu Kyi after the military declared a coup last  month.

Nationwide round-up (03/03/21)

VEHICLE inspection center owners are proposing a revised private motor vehicle inspection program to President Rodrigo R. Duterte, as daily inspections have drastically declined from 100 to five.

DoH says 36 more have COVID-19 variants

HEALTH authorities on Tuesday reported 30 more patients who got infected with a more contagious coronavirus variant from the United Kingdom and six more people who got sick with a variant from South Africa.

Senate asks gov’t to allow limited physical classes

THE Philippine Senate on Monday approved a resolution asking the government to start limited face-to-face classes in more than a thousand public schools amid a coronavirus pandemic.

Nationwide round-up (03/02/21)

THE Philippine Health Insurance Corp. (PhilHealth) is expecting to book a P17-billion loss this year with the deferment of the contribution rate hike and higher expenses due to coronavirus-related programs and benefits.

Manila starts vaccination of health workers

THE PHILIPPINES started immunizing its most vulnerable people against the coronavirus on Monday after receiving 600,000 doses of CoronaVac donated by China.

Senators want limited face-to-face classes to start

SEVEN senators on Monday filed a resolution asking the government to start the pilot tests for face-to-face classes in more than a thousand public schools amid a coronavirus pandemic.

Nationwide round-up (03/01/21)

THE National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) has until the end of this week to submit its report on the shootout between police officers and agents of the drug enforcement agency last Feb. 24, where three law enforcers and one informant died while several others were injured.

Law protecting indigenous people’s IP rights proposed

THE Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) on Monday recommended the drafting of a law that will protect the intellectual property (IP) of indigenous people.

Senate trade committee sets hearing on creative industries bill

THE SENATE trade committee will conduct a hearing on a measure seeking to develop the creative industries and draft a charter for practitioners.

Few PGH workers want CoronaVac injections

ONLY 1 of 10 health workers at the Philippine General Hospital (PGH) want to get inoculated against the coronavirus using vaccines from Chinese drug maker Sinovac Biotech Ltd., according to a hospital spokesman.

Duterte says he’ll ease lockdown with enough vaccine stocks

PHILIPPINE President Rodrigo R. Duterte on Sunday said he would put Manila and other cities under the most relaxed quarantine once the country gets at least two million doses of the coronavirus vaccine.

Nationwide round-up (02/28/21)

THE SUPREME Court (SC) has approved the destruction of seized drugs that were already inspected by designated authorities even before a case is filed.

Listen to people on VFA, Duterte told

President Rodrigo R. Duterte should listen to the people to help him decide whether to end a military deal with the United States on...

Banks need to lend more to support economic recovery – Salceda

A KEY legislator said Friday that banks need to justify their privileged place in receiving government help during a crisis by lending more, noting...

Nationwide round-up (02/25/21)

THE deadly shootout in a busy commercial area Wednesday night between members of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) and the police warrants the passage of the bill seeking to create a unified drug enforcement body, Senate President Vicente C. Sotto III said.

Sinovac vaccines may arrive this week; gov’t readies rites

THE FIRST batch of Sinovac vaccines donated by China has been prepared for delivery and may arrive in the Philippines as early as this week, according to a top company official.

Include teachers in vaccine priority list, government asked

A SENATOR wants the government to include teachers among the priority in its coronavirus vaccine program in time for a possible reopening of physical classes in August.

Manila raises alert level in Myanmar after coup

The Philippines on Wednesday raised the alert level in Myanmar after a military coup, allowing only workers with existing contracts to go to the country.

OFW group slams nurse deployment-for-vaccine proposition to UK, Germany

AN alliance of overseas Filipino  (OFWs) workers slammed recent statements by Labor officials offering to lift the cap on the deployment of healthcare workers to...

AstraZeneca, Pfizer vaccines may arrive soon

THE PHILIPPINES may take delivery of coronavirus vaccines from AstraZeneca Plc soon after meeting the requirements under a global initiative for equal access, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).

Nationwide round-up (02/23/21)

THE Senate on Tuesday approved on third and final reading a measure seeking to expedite the procurement of vaccines against the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and set an indemnification fund.

Senate OK’s bill allowing President to suspend hike in SSS contributions

THE SENATE on Monday approved on third and final reading a measure allowing President Rodrigo R. Duterte to suspend the increase in contributions by Social Security System (SSS) members.

Pork tariff reduction could kill domestic industry, Villar warns

SENATOR Cynthia A. Villar said she opposes a proposal to reduce the tariff on pork imports, saying that tariffs should fund programs to upgrade the industry’s competitiveness.

Sinovac vaccine approved for emergency use

THE PHILIPPINE Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved Sinovac Biotech Ltd.’s coronavirus vaccine for emergency use, the third drug after vaccines from Pfizer, Inc. and AstraZeneca Plc.

Gov’t agents urged to probe travel firms in Chinese scheme

A SENATOR on Monday called on the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) to identify the travel agencies involved in a money-making scheme for the “seamless entry” of Chinese nationals in the country.

16 of 18 more people with new variant got well, DoH...

PHILIPPINE health authorities have detected 18 more people infected with a more contagious coronavirus variant, 16 of whom had since recovered, according to the Department of Health (DoH).

Senator files bill that seeks to develop sea east of Philippines

A SENATOR has filed a bill that seeks to develop and explore Benham Rise, also known as the Philippine Rise, for natural resources.

Regional Updates (02/21/21)

PARTS of the southern island of Mindanao were flooded Sunday after tropical storm Auring, with designated international name Dujuan, dumped rains as it moves slowly in a northwest direction.

Senate hearing set for creative industries bill

A SENATE committee will discuss on March 1 a bill aiming to promote and develop the creative industries.

Law on vaccine harm fund, LGUs marked urgent

PRESIDENT Rodrigo R. Duterte has certified as urgent the proposed laws that will address obstacles in the procurement and delivery of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccines, the Palace said on Thursday.

Nationwide round-up (02/18/21)

AYALA Corp. Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Jaime Augusto Zobel de Ayala has joined the Council for Inclusive Capitalism with the Vatican, a global coalition that aims to make free enterprise contribute more to human development.

Philippines will have enough vaccines for adults, palace says

THE PHILIPPINES will have enough coronavirus vaccines for its adult population this year, according to the presidential palace.

Senate recommends cancellation of ‘half-baked’ privatized vehicle inspection policy

THE SENATE public services committee has recommended the repeal of the Department of Transportation’s (DoTr) order delegating motor vehicle inspection system to private operators.

Nationwide round-up (02/16/21)

THE National Privacy Commission (NPC) is warning teachers against posting on social media photos or video clips collected from online classrooms to protect the privacy of students.

Senate asks DoE for details of clean energy plan

THE SENATE is seeking assurances that the government’s moratorium on new coal-fired power plants, a measure intended to allow renewable power to develop, does not raise costs or disrupt supply.

Senate approves bill setting up regulatory regime for LPG sector

THE SENATE on Monday approved on third and final reading the measure seeking to regulate the liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) industry. With 21 affirmative votes and zero negatives and abstentions, the chamber passed Senate Bill No. 1955 which sets the regulatory framework for the LPG industry.

Gov’t delays reopening of cinemas in metro

THE GOVERNMENT has moved the reopening of movie houses in Metro Manila to March 1, according to the presidential palace, after mayors who warned of coronavirus risks opposed the plan.

Senate OK’s bill suspending SSS premium increase

THE SENATE on Monday approved on second reading a measure allowing President Rodrigo R. Duterte to defer an increase in Social Security System (SSS) contributions this year amid a coronavirus pandemic.

Nationwide round-up (02/15/21)

THE proposed department for overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) will streamline functions of existing agencies and improve the delivery of services, according to Cabinet Secretary Karlo B. Nograles.