hostage crisis probe

The Daily Roundup: 25 January 2011

Manila execs to skip HK probe on hostage tragedy”  by Sophia Dedace

Manila Mayor Alfredo Lim and Vice Mayor Isko Moreno are not keen on attending the Hong Kong government’s investigation on the Aug. 23 Manila hostage tragedy.

At a news briefing Monday, Lim said there is no need to attend the proceedings of the Hong Kong Coroner’s Court in February since the Philippines has already investigated the hostage tragedy through the Incident Investigation and Review Committee (IIRC).

Read more at GMA News

Budget deficit in 2010 seen to hit nearly $7 billion

The Philippine budget shortfall in 2010 is seen to have reached P310.4 billion ($6.99 billion), equivalent to 3.7 percent of forecast GDP growth for the year, a senior official said today.

This is four percent higher than 2009. But is lower than the programmed deficit of P325 billion ($7.32 billion) or almost four percent of the GDP.

Read more at The Philippine Star

Race vs time in beating climate-change risks to farms” by Imelda V. Abano

The Aquino administration had better hurry up in making the Philippines self-sufficient in rice through, among others, extensive irrigation and postharvest facilities—this, before intensifying climate change brings fiercer cyclones and dreadful flooding, and before other extreme-weather events make self-sufficiency impossible even with flood-resistant varieties.

With such failure to attain suffiency, according to experts, adequate imports of rice from neighboring countries that would also be on the same climate-change boat cannot be an option, as these nations look out for their own people first.

Read more at Business Mirror

$4-B new exports revenue seen”  by Max V. De Leon

THE electronics industry recorded its highest ever annual investments total at $2.318 billion in 2010, which could easily result in an additional $4 billion in exports.

“Before, we used to say that for every $1 of investment, it will result in $3 of exports. I can’t say now if that rule of thumb still holds, but I’m sure that once the $2 billion worth of projects become fully operational, they can generate at least $4 billion in additional export revenues [per year],” said Ernesto Santiago, president of the Semiconductor and Electronics Industries of the Philippines Inc. (Seipi).

Read more at Business Mirror

Malacanang, Church OK informed choice in family planning” by Ana Mae G. Roa and Jo Javan A. Cerda

THE PALACE and the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) held another dialogue on the reproductive health (RH) issue yesterday, underscoring the importance of free and informed choice on family planning, a Palace spokesperson said.

It was the second of such meetings between both parties after initial talks last December when the government and Church hierarchy agreed to pursue an information drive on both natural and artificial methods.

Read more at Business World

Philippines’ global peace index ranking plunges” by Jojo Malig

Rampant crime, terrorism and insurgency contributed to the big drop of the Philippines’ Global Peace Index (GPI) ranking in 2010.

The Philippines placed 130th on a list of 149 countries in the 2010 GPI, according to astudy published by the Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP).

Read more at ABS-CBN News

Weak jobs recovery likely to continue” by Paul M. Icamina

WEAK recovery in jobs is likely to continue in 2011 as record highs in global unemployment continued for the third straight year since the start of the economic crisis, according to the International Labor Organization (ILO) in a new report.

Despite a sharp rebound in economic growth in many countries, official global unemployment stood at 205 million in 2010, according to the annual Global Employment Trends 2011 report that the ILO will release today.

Read more at Malaya Business Insight

Avoiding an ‘Empty PDP’” by Cielito Habito

ONCE UPON a time—during the Ramos presidency in 1992-1998, specifically—it fell on my shoulders to lead the work of formulating the Medium Term Philippine Development Plan (MTPDP). This document is considered to be the country’s development “bible,” the guiding blueprint that defines the country’s development strategy over the six-year period coinciding with the term of a president. As such, it is seen to embody the incumbent leadership’s vision, goals and strategies for securing the country’s future and uplifting the lives of its people, something every newly elected president is expected to unveil soon after taking office.

Read more at Philippine Daily Inquirer

Globe offers fiber-to-home Internet service” by Paolo Montecillo

Amid increasing demand for higher speeds and bigger downloads, Ayala-led Globe Telecom Inc. has launched the new Globe Tattoo Torque—the fastest Internet connection for homes in the Philippines.

Tattoo Torque, which offers speeds up to 150 megabytes per second (mbps), is the first direct-to-home fiber-optic cable Internet connection in the Philippines.

Read more at Philippine Daily Inquirer