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Philippines Defence Forum

Discussion in 'China & Far East' started by Malaya, Feb 14, 2013.

  1. Cossack25A1

    Cossack25A1 SENIOR MEMBER

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    Reported last July but it is still relevant, sadly Pinoys will see this as lies and opposition propaganda while Filipinos will agree on this.
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    FOCUS | Economy under the Aquino administration a case of worsening exclusivity

    After four years of the Aquino administration, the most recent available data on various socioeconomic indicators affirm the exclusionary nature of the country's economic growth:

    1. Jobs crisis continues

    The country is still facing the most unemployed and underemployed Filipinos in history. The government’s labor force data shows that there were 4.5 million unemployed (correcting for official government underestimation) and 7.3 million underemployed. Put together, this means that 11.5 million Filipinos (over ¼ of the labor force) are unemployed or looking for more work.

    The country's unemployment rate – whether using IBON's adjusted estimate of 10.4% or the official rate of 7.0% – is the worst in Asia. Recent unemployment rates in other Asian countries including those at similar levels of economic development as the Philippines are much lower: Brunei (1.1%), Cambodia (0.10%), Indonesia (5.7%), Malaysia (2.9%), Myanmar (4.0%), Singapore (2.0%), Thailand (0.9%), Vietnam (2.2%), South Korea (3.7%), India (3.8%) and China (4.1%). It is not coincidental that the Philippines has among the most liberalized economies among this group.

    It is also important to assess the quality of work in interpreting the 2014 April round figures. Around 1.7 million additional employed persons were reported to reach a total of 38.7 million employed. However, the additional work was in effect wholly in part-time work which increased by 2.2 million compared to a marked 673,000 decline in the numbers in full-time work. These results continue a marked trend since the start of the Aquino administration in 2010 of part-time work steadily outpacing full-time work. Nearly four in 10 jobs (38.7%) in the country now are part-time and very likely low-pay and insecure work.

    It is also important to consider that the number of those employed but classified as working without pay increased by 296,000 from last year to reach over 4.3 million in April. The informal sector – composed of own-account and unpaid family workers – thus continues to grow and reached 16.5 million or a very substantial four out of 10 (42.5%) of total employed in the same period.

    The number of unemployed remains most concentrated among the youth where half (49.8%) of all unemployed are in the 15-24 year old age group – at least 19.1 million youth nationwide – and another almost third (30.5%) are in the 25-34 age group.

    Among the unemployed, almost four out of 10 (36.9%) have a college education with at least 655,000 or over two out of 10 (22.4%) actually having graduated. Another one out of 10 (8.6%) have at least some post-secondary education while over three out of 10 (33.2%) have a high school degree. That nearly eight out of 10 (78.2%) of unemployed Filipinos have at least a high school degree, with others even having post-secondary or college degrees, underscores how the main factor driving joblessness is not low educational attainment so much as the weak job creation by the economy.

    This point is further stressed by considering the continuing large numbers of Filipinos forced to go abroad to find work, which includes among the country's most educated. The LFS is not able to capture this because of some long-unresolved methodological limitations in its survey. However, administrative records from the Philippine Overseas Employment Agency (POEA) report that 1.8 million Filipinos left the country for work in 2013 - which is equivalent to a record 5,031 leaving the country every day. This is more than the daily average of 4,937 leaving in 2012 although a smaller year-on-year increase than in previous years.

    2. Rising prices eroding low incomes

    Food prices started increasing more rapidly in the latter part of 2013 and then in the first semester of 2014, which further reduced the value of already low and falling real incomes. These pushed monthly inflation rates to their highest in the last 2 1/2 years especially with how food consumption can account for 40-50% of total expenditure of the country's vast low- income households.

    The rising prices have to be measured for their impact given the actual levels of poor families' incomes. Rough estimates on the results of the latest 2012 Family Income and Expenditure Survey (FIES) show that the poorest 70% of Filipinos – or some 66 million Filipinos – try to live off incomes of around just P38, P51, P59, P71, P84, P100 and P125 per day (corresponding to the lowest seven income deciles). These were computed by dividing average annual income per decile by 365 days and an assumed average family size of five. Larger families mean lower incomes per family member and vice versa for smaller families.

    The cost of education has also started to crawl upwards. The opening of the school year 2014-2015 had the Department of Education (DepED) approving four-fifths of 1,477 petitions for tuition fee increases in private elementary and secondary schools. Similarly, the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) approved over four-fifths of applications for tuition fee increases for academic year 2014-2015. This has meant an average increase in tuition fees and of school fees nationwide by around 8% and going up to 13-14% in some regions; the tuition fee increase in the NCR is 6 percent.

    Oil product price increases, meanwhile, are moderate for now although the price of gasoline, diesel and LPG still generally remain higher than in recent years. The price of LPG has tempered from extremely high prices in 2013. The momentum of rising power rates in the last part of 2013 has, however, been arrested with the Supreme Court continuing for an indefinite period its temporary restraining order on the Meralco rate hike upon alleged wholesale electricity spot market (WESM) manipulation.

    All these price pressures drove monthly inflation rates to a range of 3.9-4.5% in the first semester of 2014. The lowest inflation was recorded in March (3.9%) and the highest in May (4.5%) while inflation remains high at 4.4% in June. These rates are much higher compared to the annual averages of 3.2% in 2012 and 3.0% in 2013. Accelerating inflation is among the most important precipitating factors for interest rate hikes by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP).

    3. Poverty is still severe

    The government’s poverty figures at most only measure trends among the poorest 20-30% of the population or at the very deepest levels of poverty in Filipinos and families in the country – which amounts to around 25 million Filipinos in severe poverty in 2013. As it is, using but reinterpreting data from the National Statistical Coordination Board (NSCB), some 56 million Filipinos live off around P100 or less a day and some 66 million Filipinos live off around P125 or less a day. These are better indicators of the real extent of poverty in the country. They are also more consistent with IBON national opinion survey results which reported 67.0% of respondents describing their family's situation as poor.

    It must be noted that there are no significant changes in the real economy, whether on the production or demand side, to suggest that it has already shifted to a new and higher level of economic expansion. In the absence of any structural transformation the economy's trajectory in the next few years will be heavily influenced by the degree of government spending and by how far private construction increases, which remains a question.

    Over the medium-term, the Aquino government is still relying on greater foreign investments to propel economic growth and development. The recent credit rating upgrades have been played up as outcomes of good governance and signaling increased flows of foreign debt and equity financing to the country. But the problem with this is that any increased foreign financing will have a short-term and limited impact if they are concentrated in foreign firms in low value-added areas of the economy rather than building domestic agriculture and Filipino industry.

    The poor socioeconomic performance is the necessary result of a Philippine economy that does not serve the needs of the majority of Filipinos. The economy is dysfunctional for not having agricultural and industrial sectors commensurate to its vast human and natural resources. It is also organized to generate wealth for a few rather than provide for the needs of its tens of millions of peasants, fisherfolk, private and public sector workers, employees, and smaller domestic enterprises.

    IBON Foundation, Inc. is an independent development institution established in 1978 that provides research, education, publications, information work and advocacy support on socioeconomic issues.


    FOCUS | Economy under the Aquino administration a case of worsening exclusivity

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    Well it only benefits the Oligarchy here.
     
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2014
  2. Bienvenido

    Bienvenido FULL MEMBER

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    Naval exercises in Australia to enhance surface warfare capability of PN
    August 17,2014

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    Philippine News Agency – With the departure of BRP Ramon Alcaraz (PF-16) and her embarked Agusta Westland AW-109 “Power” helicopter (PNH-431) Sunday for “Kakadu 2014″, the Philippine Navy expects to further boost its surface warfare capability with its incoming interaction with the Royal Australian Navy and 12 other participant nations.

    “[The] PN’s participation is expected to enhance its surface warfare capabilities and interoperability with regional navies. It will also be an opportunity for the PN to enhance cooperation, camaraderie, and good working relationship with the participating navies,” PN public affairs officer for “Kakadu 2014″ Ensign John Windy Abing said.

    The biennial exercises, the largest hosted by the RAN, will from Aug. 25 to Sept. 12 at the Northern Australian Exercise Area.

    The send-off ceremony for BRP Ramon Alcaraz and the 180 officers and enlisted personnel aboard her was spearheaded by PN vice commander Rear Admiral Isabelo H. Gador at Subic Bay Freeport, Olongapo, Zambales.

    “Kakadu 2014″ will be participated in by 12 countries. The participating countries with navy ships/aircrafts are Japan, New Zealand, Philippines, Pakistan and Australia while Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, Thailand, Vanuatu, South Korea, and India will be sending personnel as observers.

    Abing said that this is the second time the PN has sent its ship to participate since the exercise began way back in 1993.

    The first time that the PN sent a ship was in 1999. PN observers were also sent in 2003, 2005, and 2007.

    It can be recalled that on March 2014, Alcaraz’s sister ship, BRP Gregorio Del Pilar (PF-15) was also sent to Indonesia to participate for the first time in the Multilateral Naval Exercise codenamed “Komodo” which was participated in by 16 countries.

    The PN’s participation in multilateral exercises is an affirmation of its commitment in collaborating with other navies to promote peace and stability in the maritime region.

    Naval exercises in Australia to enhance surface warfare capability of PN




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    Personnel of BRP Ramon Alcaraz (PF-16) haul the recently acquired brand new Rigid Hull Inflatable Boat (RHIB) on board the ship.


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    Philippine Navy personnel inspect the BRP Ramon Alcaraz’s Oto Melara, the ship’s main gun, in preparation for its participation in the multilateral naval exercise dubbed as “KAKADU 2014” that will be hosted by Royal Australian Navy (RAN) from Aug. 25, to Sept. 12, 2014 at Northern Australia Exercise Area.



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    Members of Naval Air Group secures AW 109 naval helicopter at the flight deck of BRP Ramon Alcaraz. Alcaraz and AW109 will be sent to participate in the biggest Aussie war games as the PN aims to level up the capabilities of its operating ships and aircrafts with other navies.




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    The women power on deck of BRP Ramon Alcaraz
     
  3. Bienvenido

    Bienvenido FULL MEMBER

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    Fil-Am named commanding officer of US Navy aircraft carrier
    August 11, 2014


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    MANILA, Philippines - Filipino sailors are looking forward to meeting Capt. Ronald Ravelo, who made history by being the first Filipino-American to be named commanding officer of a US Navy aircraft carrier.

    Lt. Cdr. Marineth Domingo, acting spokesperson for the Philippine Navy, said they are proud of the achievements of Ravelo, who assumed as commander of USS Abraham Lincoln last Aug. 7.

    “During exercises with the US, we meet a lot of servicemen. It will be a pleasure to meet him,” Domingo told The STAR yesterday.

    “As Filipinos, we are proud that a Filipino-American was named the commander of such a large ship,” she added.

    No joint activities involving the Philippine Navy and crew of the USS Abraham Lincoln have been scheduled so far.

    Domingo, nevertheless, said an engagement with Ravelo would provide Filipino sailors an opportunity to learn from his experiences as a Navy officer.

    “We can learn about his challenges and how he was able to prove himself. It really shows that Filipinos can excel in whatever duty given to them,” she said.

    According to the US Navy website, Ravelo hails from San Diego, California and is a 1987 graduate of University of Southern California, where he earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Industrial and Systems Engineering.

    A naval aviator, Ravelo served with the Chargers of HS-14 in all of his fleet aviation tours, eventually leading the squadron from 2005 to 2007.

    During his stint with the Chargers, he joined various operations, including Operation Desert Storm during the Gulf War.



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    AFP to acquire 2 C-130 transport planes from US for P2.66B
    August 5, 2014
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    The Philippines is set to acquire two C-130 transport planes from the US for $61 million (about P2.66 billion), after the US State Department approved the sale.

    According to the US Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DCSA), the Philippine government requested the sale of the planes plus 10 T56-16 engines (eight installed and two spares). The arrangement will also include the logistical sustainment of the planes for three years.

    The DCSA notified the US Congress of the sale on July 23. In its statement, the agency said the Philippines wants to procure the planes "to improve the mobility and resupply of its forces and for the provision of humanitarian assistance in the Philippines and the wider region, thereby reducing the potential level of US assistance requested/needed for these purposes."

    The Philippine Air Force (PAF) currently has three C-130s, which are used in the transport of troops and the delivery of relief goods to disaster areas.

    In an earlier interview, AFP chief Lt. Gen. Gregorio Pio Catapang said the PAF is expecting the delivery of the aircraft next year. "We are just finalizing the documents," he said. — BM, GMA News

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    August 9-10 2014 - Naval Forces Southern Luzon hosted the Philippine Navy Recruitment Examination here in Bicol Region headed by LTJG CUNTAPAY PN of NPMC, with a total of Four hundred ninety two (492) examinees wherein twelve (12) out of two hundred thirty seven (237) passed the NOCC exam while two hundred forty five (245) out of two hundred fifty eight (258) passed the BSC examination

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    BRP Artemio Ricarte

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    BRP Apolinario Mabini

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    BRP Emilio Jacinto


    Organization and branches


    The 1987 Philippine Constitution placed the AFP under the control of a civilian, the President of the Philippines, who acts as its Commander-in-Chief. All of its branches are part of the Department of National Defense, which is headed by the Secretary of National Defense.

    The AFP has three major branches:

    These three major branches are unified under a Chief of Staff who normally holds the rank of General/Admiral. He is assisted by a Vice Chief of Staff, normally holding the rank of Lieutenant General/Vice Admiral. Each of the three major branches are headed by an officer with the following titles: Commanding General of the Philippine Army (Lieutenant General), Flag Officer in Command of the Philippine Navy (Vice Admiral), and Commanding General of the Philippine Air Force (Lieutenant General).

    Military ranks


    Ranks of officers in the Philippine Military are usually pronounced in Filipino, in which they adapt the military ranks from the U.S. Military. The officer ranks are as follows:


      • Pangalawang Tenyente (Second Lieutenant),
      • Unang Tenyente (First Lieutenant),
      • Kapitan (Captain),
      • Magat (Major),
      • Tenyente Koronel (Lieutenant Colonel),
      • Koronel (Colonel),
      • Brigadyer Heneral (Brigadier General),
      • Magat Heneral (Major General),
      • Tenyente Heneral (Lieutenant General),
      • Heneral (General)
    These ranks are officially used in the Philippine Army, Air Force and Marine Corps. Also, the pronunciations of these ranks are actually adaptations from the Spanish and English language except, for the words “pangalawang” and “unang” which came from original Tagalog pronunciation.

    In the Philippine Navy however, the pronunciation in Filipino of the officer’s ranks, is just the same as in English since these ranks were adopted from the ranks of U.S. and British Royal navies. There are some ranks though (placed in parenthesis) that can be translated and officially pronounced in Filipino. The ranks are as follows:


      • Ensign
      • Lieutenant Junior Grade (Tenyente na Mabababang Baitang)
      • Lieutenant or Lieutenant Senior Grade (Tenyente or Tenyente na Mataas na Baitang)
      • Lieutenant Commander (Tenyente Kumander)
      • Commander (Kumander)
      • Captain (Kapitan)
      • Commodore
      • Rear Admiral
      • Vice Admiral(Bise Admiral)
      • Admiral
     
  4. Cossack25A1

    Cossack25A1 SENIOR MEMBER

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    Current combat aircraft in the Air Force's service.

    SIAI-Marchetti (Aermacchi) S.211

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    The SIAI-Marchetti (later Aermacchi) S-211 is a turbofan-powered military trainer aircraft designed and originally marketed by SIAI-Marchetti as the S.211. Some 60 aircraft have been sold to air forces around the world. Aermacchi bought the production rights in 1997. The redesigned M-311 is currently under development by Alenia Aermacchi.

    Since the 1990s, the Philippine Air Force has been using the S-211 as a Trainer with secondary Attack Capability. These were redesignated as AS-211s and nicknamed as "Warriors".With the retirement of the F-5 fighters in 2005, the additional task of air defense was assigned to it as well. Because of this, the Philippine Air Force initiated some improvements to the AS-211s to improve its combat capability thru a series of programs and innovations.

    The first program was called "Project Falcon" which installed the Norsight Optical Sight from retired F-5s into the AS-211. The program was initiated by Lieutenant Colonel Enrique Dela Cruz, the Group Commander of the 5th Tactical Fighter Group. This was followed by the "Project Falcon Uniform" program which repainted the aircraft with a 2-tone Light and Dark Ghost Gray paint scheme along with low visibility markings to reduce their overall visibility.

    The "Project Falcon Hear" program saw the optimizing of air-ground communications on the AS-211 by upgrading and installing the AN/ARC-34 UHF radios from the F-5A/B. These aircraft were also fitted with a Belly Gun Pod designed, developed and manufactured by Philippine company Aerotech Industries Philippines, Inc. (AIPI). Each Pod is equipped with an M3 .50 cal Machine Gun, an automatic charger and approximately 240 rounds of .50 cal ammunition.


    The Philippine Air Force has about five units that are in active service.

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    Alenia Aermacchi SF-260

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    The SIAI-Marchetti SF.260 (now Alenia Aermacchi SF-260) is an Italian light aircraft marketed as an aerobatics and military trainer. It was designed by Stelio Frati, originally for Aviamilano, which flew the first prototype of it (then designated F.260) on July 15, 1964. Actual production was undertaken when SIAI Marchetti purchased the design soon thereafter and continued with this firm until the company was bought by Aermacchi in 1997. The military versions are popular with smaller air forces, which can also arm it for use in the close-support role.


    In the early 1970s an order was placed for 48 SF.260s (32 SF.260M; 16 SF.260W). The first six were delivered in May 1973, replacing the Beech T-34A Mentor with 100th Training Wing at Fernando Air Base

    The 15th Strike Wing on airbase Sangley Point received the SF.260W Warrior as an addition to the North American T-28 Trojans. They were possibly used in combat against rebel forces in the south of the Philippines. But little is known about its service life. In the early 1980s, the surviving Warriors were disarmed and transferred to the training role with 100th Training Wing.

    The Philippines Air Force signed with Agusta a contract for the delivery of 18 SF.260TP turboprops on 31 December 1991, replacing the SF.260M/W in the training role. The first SF.260TP was noted in country on 1 July 1993.

    Under "Project Layang" the Philippines Air Force plans to upgrade 18 SF.260M/W aircraft to the SF.260TP standard, by replacing the Lycoming piston engine with the Allison 250-B17D turbopropengine and newer avionics. The first upgraded SF.260 was delivered in 1996, no further details are available.

    The Philippines has finalized a deal with Alenia Aermacchi for 18 new-build SF.260F primary/basic trainers. All 18 were delivered by Aermacchi Italy which was locally assembled by Aerotech Industries Philippines by April 2011.

    Six Warriors were sold to Bourkina-Faso via Belgium in 1986.


    The Philippine Air Force has about 20 "SF-260TP/MP" light attack variant and 18 "SF-260FH" primary trainers in service.

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    North American Rockwell OV-10 Bronco

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    The North American Rockwell OV-10 Bronco is a turboprop light attack and observation aircraft. It was developed in the 1960s as a special aircraft for counter-insurgency (COIN) combat, and one of its primary missions was as a forward air control (FAC) aircraft. It can carry up to three tons of external munitions, internal loads like paratroops or stretchers, and can loiter for three or more hours.

    The Philippine Air Force (PAF) received 24 OV-10As from U.S. stocks in 1991, later followed by a further nine from the United States, and eight ex-Thai Air Force OV-10Cs in 2003–2004.[25][26] The OV-10s are operated by the 16th Attack Squadron and 25th Composite Attack Squadron of the 15th Strike Wing, based in Sangley Point, Cavite. The PAF flies Broncos on search-and-rescue and COIN operations in various parts of the Philippines. The first two women combat pilots in the PAF flew OV-10s with the 16th. This squadron flew anti-terrorist operations in the Jolo Islands.[28]

    PAF OV-10 Broncos have been repeatedly used in air strikes against Moro Islamic Liberation Front positions during ongoing fighting in 2011,[29] and two were used in an air strike on February 2012 which resulted in the death of three Abu Sayyaf and Jemaah Islamiyah commanders, among others. Philippine Air Force OV-10s have been reportedly modified in order to employ modern smart bombs.


    At present, the Philippine Air Force has about 10 units in active service.

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    I didn't include the KAI T-50 Golden Eagle as it has not yet arrived in the Philippines and it is not yet in service.
     
  5. Cossack25A1

    Cossack25A1 SENIOR MEMBER

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    I think both the Philippine Army and PH Marine Corps should consider replacing the V-150s with the Oshkosh M-ATV as not only it is armored but also mine-resistant. A possible modification will have an M-ATV sporting a 1-meter turret that are found in V-150s and Simba APCs that are in PH military service.

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    Another possible vehicle is the M1117 ASV as this vehicle is the successor to the old Cadillac Gage Commando series to which the V-150 is a variant of that vehicle.

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    Last edited: Aug 19, 2014
  6. Cossack25A1

    Cossack25A1 SENIOR MEMBER

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    This may have been written way back in August 2011, but the following topic gives an idea how the Fil-Chinese oligarchy is technically in control of the Philippines' economy, why the country is in a very-sorry state and why they HATE the idea of removing the 60/40 Economic restriction, which some Pinoy users would prefer at the expense of having below-quality services.

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    Filipinos to remain at the mercy of oligarchs

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    Filipinos to remain at the mercy of oligarchs

    In June this year, the Philippines celebrated the 150th birth anniversary of its national hero, Jose Rizal, who was executed by the Spanish colonialists. Rizal believed that the only justification for national liberation was the restoration of the dignity of the people, saying '... why independence, if the slaves of today will be the tyrants of tomorrow?' In light of this, the following analysis of the country's economy makes uncomfortable reading.

    Nick Legaspi

    THE Philippines, which claims to be the first democratic government in Asia, is actually ruled by oligarchs.

    'The oligarchs still rule the country, and Filipinos will forever be the victims of their profiteering,' says political science professor Benito Lim of the Ateneo de Manila University.

    Lim says the oligarchs can be controlled but it will require strong political will. Asked if President Benigno S Aquino III, who continues to enjoy high popularity and trust ratings, can do it, Lim responds: 'Mukhang hindi siya pinakikinggan. Maliit ang boses. [It seems nobody listens to him. Weak.]'

    Members of the oligarchy in the Philippines have 'little corners' of their own and hardly get out of their own spheres of industries, apparently realising that if they resort to competition, one of them will fall.

    'In general, we see no competition among the oligarchs because the role of the oligarchs is chasing after profits,' Lim notes. 'There is no crossing of swords resulting in big competition except for the PLDT-Globe dispute.'

    On the other hand, everybody wants to be on top. 'Right now, Henry Sy is the richest,' Lim relates, 'but others continue to aspire for that position.'

    Political analyst Alex Magno says oligarchy is a term in political science which applies to a government controlled by a group. Loosely used, oligarchy can apply to the dominance of the national economy by a few individuals or a group.

    Imperfect regulatory structure

    'With an imperfect regulatory structure and uneven access to opportunities the tendency is for a few to control the economy,' Magno explains.

    He says oligarchs in the Philippines are not so different from those in other countries - 'they are protected and nourished by an imperfect regulatory structure.'

    Asiasec Equities, in a recent report, cites the situation in the domestic cement industry.

    According to the report, the cement industry has had little investment in new capacity for the past 15 years after the 'Big Three' foreign players consolidated domestic ownership and controlled practically 90% of industry capacity.

    'Instead of building, the big three cement players decommissioned several kilns and reduced domestic capacity to 14mn MT against claimed installed capacity of 22mn MT,' Asiasec relates. 'The current price of cement of US$110/MT is the highest among emerging markets in Asia and the average age of the Philippine cement facilities is over 40 years.'

    'There is an apparent "controlled supply environment", which is conducive for pricing,' the equities firm avers.

    The Russian example

    The Merriam-Webster online dictionary defines oligarchy as 1) 'a government by the few', or 2) 'a government in which a small group exercises control especially for corrupt and selfish purposes; also: a group exercising such control'.

    Wikipedia says oligarchy is 'a form of power structure in which power effectively rests with a small number of people. These people could be distinguished by royalty, wealth, family ties, corporate, or military control.'

    'Aristotle pioneered the use of the term as a synonym for rule by the rich, for which the exact term is plutocracy, but oligarchy is not always a rule by wealth, as oligarchs can simply be a privileged group, and do not have to be connected by bloodlines as in a monarchy,' Wikipedia relates.

    As an example of a modern oligarchy, Wikipedia cites what happened after the collapse of the Soviet Union in December 1991, when privately owned Russia-based multinational corporations, including producers of petroleum, natural gas and metal, became oligarchs.

    Wikipedia's narration is strikingly similar to what is happening in the Philippines today: 'Privatisation allowed executives to amass phenomenal wealth and power almost overnight. In May 2004, the Russian edition of Forbes identified 36 of these oligarchs as being worth at least $1 billion.'

    In the Philippines, Forbes magazine listed 11 Filipino billionaires for 2011, up from five for 2010. The new billionaires are: San Miguel Chairman and CEO Eduardo Cojuangco Jr. ($1.4 billion), David Consunji ($1.98 billion) of DMCI Holdings Corp., Enrique Razon ($1.68 billion) of the International Container Terminal Services Inc., Metrobank's George S.K. Ty ($1.1 billion), former Trade and Industry Minister Roberto Ongpin ($1.3 billion) and Jollibee Chairman Tony Tan Caktiong ($1 billion).

    Retailing and banking king Henry Sy remains the richest with a net worth estimated at $7.28 billion, followed by Lucio Tan ($2.88 billion), John Gokongwei Jr. ($2.48 billion), Andrew Tan ($2 billion) and Jaime Zobel de Ayala ($1.78 billion).

    Oligarchs won't allow charter change

    Senator Manny Villar says oligarchy is the reason why attempts to amend the economic provisions of the Constitution have failed - three presidents (Fidel Ramos, Joseph Estrada and Gloria Macapagal Arroyo) tried to amend the Constitution in the past 15 years, to no avail.

    'We're still an oligarchy run by a few families,' Villar says. 'They're happy with the present setup now and they will not allow the Constitution to be tampered with.'

    'The media, from what I've seen, is also controlled by groups that do not want to change the Constitution,' the former Senate president adds. 'And that is why any proposal [to amend the Constitution] will be killed right away.'

    Villar notes the difficulties encountered by small entrepreneurs in growing their business.

    'We always look at foreign investments but we don't look at the local, the small entrepreneurs, who are unable to borrow, unable to access credit because our banking system is controlled by five or six families and they are happy investing in ROPs [government debt papers] or lending to big industries,' the senator relates. 'Right now that is our banking system - it's a cartel and it's getting fewer and bigger through consolidation.'

    Villar did not identify the families that control the banking system.

    The biggest bank in terms of resources, Banco de Oro, is owned by Henry Sy, who also owns China Bank. George Ty owns the second largest bank, Metropolitan Bank & Trust Corp.

    The Ayalas own Bank of the Philippine Islands, the third largest and the most profitable, while Lucio Tan owns the Philippine National Bank and Allied Banking Corp.

    Taipan Alfonso Yuchengco owns Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. while the Cebu-based Aboitiz family owns Union Bank.

    Then Socioeconomic Secretary Romulo Neri, during a forum organised by the University of the Philippines in 2004, indicated that the oligarchs were the first and foremost to oppose tax measures being proposed by government such as those for sin products, medicine, telecommunications, and power.

    In its newsletter, the UP Third World Studies Center and Department of Political Science recalled that 'in 1997, with the passage of the Comprehensive Tax Reform Package, the country's tax effort declined. In one of its provisions, corporations enjoyed a cut in their tax rates along with other numerous tax incentives.'

    Oligarchy breeds political dynasties

    Philippine Star columnist Carmen N Pedrosa believes that oligarchy has become a culture in the Philippines. 'Our culture is so deeply imbibed with the ambition for wealth and power,' she said in her column 'From a Distance' published by the Philippine Star on 10 July 2010. 'So when we blame oligarchs for the sorry state of our country, we must also look into ourselves and say yeh, but we also want to be oligarchs or be friends with an oligarch because that is the system.'

    According to Pedrosa, political dynasties are among the effects of oligarchic culture. 'So it should not surprise anyone that in the last two governments we have had children of past presidents, one of them from a very wealthy family,' she said.

    President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo is the daughter of President Diosdado Macapagal, while President Benigno Aquino is the son of President Cory Aquino.

    'The trouble is that all this is done under cover of democracy,' Pedrosa said. 'We delude ourselves that we are democratic and we have elections to prove that. There will be few who will accept that if we were to think it through, elections merely vote in or vote out leaders from the same small pool of oligarchs or would-be oligarchs.'

    'We need to break out of this vicious oligarchic circle,' she stressed. 'Unfortunately, we can only do that by changing our Constitution or launching a revolution, hopefully not a violent one.'

    'The oligarchic stranglehold on the Philippine political economy can be loosened by strengthening the bureaucracy, reforming the political party system and amending the Philippine Constitution,' said Romulo Neri. 'Without these reforms, the oligarchic dominance over the state will never be broken.'

    The statement of Ateneo's Benito Lim is grim: 'There is harmony among the oligarchs. Filipinos will continue to be at the mercy of the oligarchs.'

    7 groups dominate economy

    Asiasec's report identifies seven conglomerates that dominate the Philippine economy, without labelling them as oligarchs. These are: San Miguel Corp. (SMC), Ayala Corp., First Pacific, SM Investments Corp., JG Summit, DM Consunji and Aboitiz.

    Asiasec says that, among the conglomerates, SMC has a very tight grip - its control and ownership remain substantial in its key business units - compared with the other groups that have neither a super majority interest nor a consolidating stake of 51% in their key businesses.

    SMC has 100% interest in its power generation business, 90% in Petron (fuel and oil), 100% in telecom, 99% in food, 78% in Ginebra, 99% in property (San Miguel Properties Inc.), 70% in Bank of Commerce, 100% in mining (coal) and 100% in airport (Caticlan).

    SMC enjoys majority interest in San Miguel Brewery (51%), Metro Rail Transit 7 (51%) and toll roads (51%).

    In addition, SMC has a significant minority in other businesses: 37% in the Manila Electric Co., 40% in Liberty Telecom and 35% in Manila North Harbor.

    Ayala Corp. has 68% interest in Integrated Micro-electronics Inc., 54% in Ayala Land Inc., 31% in Globe Telecom, 34% in Bank of the Philippine Islands and 43% in Manila Water Co.

    Asiasec notes that Ayala Corp's ownership in key businesses it controls such as telecom and banking has not even reached a majority (51%) ownership, in contrast with SMC's controlling and super majority position in most of its businesses.

    'The power generation ambition of Ayala Corp., which was welcomed by the market, is in contrast a very small wind-farm (less than 50 MW) vis-a-vis San Miguel's diverse power portfolio (3,145 MW),' Asiasec says.

    Hong Kong-based First Pacific, represented by PLDT Chairman Manuel V. Pangilinan, has a controlling interest (100%) in TV5, majority interest in Metro Pacific Investments Corp. (55%) and controlling but not majority interest in Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co. (27%), Philex Mining Corp. (46%) and Manila Electric Co. (41%).

    Henry Sy's SM Investments Corp. (SMIC) has controlling interest in its department store business (90%) and supermarket (100%), majority interest in SM Prime Holdings (51%), controlling but not majority interest in Banco de Oro (41%) and SM Development Corp. (44%), and significant minority interest in China Bank (20%), Highlands Prime (31%) and Belle Corp. (35%).

    'For the SM group, it is worth highlighting that their retail assets (department store and supermarket) are all consolidated under SMIC and remain super majority,' Asiasec says. 'They have a majority controlling interest in SM Prime, albeit the ownership has been opened to the public, and controlling interest in both SMDC and BDO.'

    John Gokongwei's JG Summit has controlling interest in petrochem (80%), majority interest in Universal Robina Corp. (60%), Robinsons Land Corp. (60%), Digital Telecoms (50%) and Cebu Air (65%), and a significant minority in UIC (32%).

    The Aboitiz group controls Pilmico (100%) and Aboitiz Power (76%) and has controlling but not majority stake in Accuria, its transportation business, at 49.5%.

    DMCI has a 100% stake in DMCI Homes, 56% in Semirara Mining Corp. and 33% in Maynilad Water Services Inc.

    Nick Legaspi is Managing Editor of the Philippine weekly business newsmagazine BizNews Asia, from which this article is reproduced (July 18-25, 2011 issue).

    ------
    Realities of Philippine oligarchy - The Manila Times OnlineThe Manila Times Online
    ------

    The following article was written back in May 2014.

    Realities of Philippine oligarchy

    It is not common in a developing country like the Philippines that you will find multi-billionaires of genuine Filipino blood. A true blooded Filipino is easily identifiable because he is born with both a Filipino mother and father. And perhaps, to further boost his Filipino lineage, both parents should have been born of Filipino ancestral origin. Of course this is not to cast doubts on the ancestry of the elite class of local “Filipino” billionaires in the country who are without doubt of predominantly Chinese origin, with the total wealth of the Top 10 billionaires approximately more than double what the entire Filipinos combined have in their pockets at $39.1 billion.

    With the current running rate of the dollar at 44 to a peso, this is about P1,720 billion or P1.7 trillion which is more than double the approximate total Philippine money in circulation of about P600 billion! This is not to mention other personalities in the mainstream who are also making waves in the field of business and entreneurship.

    Henry Sy alone has about $11 billion of fortune in his portfolio. That in itself is equivalent to about 73 percent of the local money in circulation. Sy’s total accumulated fortune approximately doubles what the distant second richest Lucio Tan has in his arsenal of wealth of about $6 billion. Henry Sy’s fortune of $11 billion is more than the combined wealth of Lucio Tan ($6.1 billion) and Andrew Tan ($4.7 billion), the second and third richest locally.

    See the great disparity of living in a too democratic economy like the Philippines? Not because opportunities were made for the chosen few but for other reasons that are either personal or institutional to the individual or society.

    This is not to say that true blooded Filipinos lack the opportunity of accumulating a fortune in their own land or that they don’t have the essential skills or capabilities to be one of the best in the field of entrepreneurship. Sad to say, it has become a rarity in the Philippines to see a true blooded Filipino achieve such kind of feat in his own land. Perhaps more than the opportunity available at our dispensation is the attitude displayed by our local talents. We see a long list of Filipino entrepreneurs who risked a considerable amount of money for a business venture but came home empty handed.

    Many bright Filipinos in our midst who possess the skills and academic ammunition to succeed in the field of commerce and industry choose to remain unperturbed in the sidelines and would rather pursue a career as technocrats instead of being an entrepreneur but in the end wallow in mediocrity. This perhaps puts the true blooded Filipino in a bind as regards everyone’s dream of becoming a tycoon is concerned.

    As time goes on, business entrepreneurship has become competitive more so with the growing cost of technology making the price of success more prohibitive. This in effect dampens our desire for competition especially if you are a struggling businessman with a meager budget looking for an immediate result in your investment.

    This is unlike the inherent resiliency displayed by the likes of successful entrepreneurs you always see and read in the limelight of the business front, where success and fortune has become a tradition for these “Filipino Chinese” entrepreneurs who are in the elite class of “Filipino billionaires.”

    The nature of oligarchy that exists in our midst has further created a disparity in resource distribution which aggravates the growing incidence of hunger and poverty locally. Latest statistics show that hunger statistics and self-rated poverty have grown despite the local growth rate. Does this have something to do with the lesser opportunities available to the Filipinos because local wealth is concentrated on the few?

    Is it an apt time for the government to devise a policy that will provide greater opportunities for the less fortunate? In what way will true blooded Filipinos be given an equal chance if not more than equal odds of getting a “dip in the pie” of wealth opportunities? The way the system works, the breaks of the game go to the personality with a lot to spare which only the current crop of billionaires possess.

    Competing with their equal will always be a battle between David and Goliath. While David was able to create the opportunity of winning in his favor; it would seem unlikely that struggling entrepreneurs would possess even that slim chance of surviving in a competition dominated by mammoth personalities in the field of business.

    Unless and until the government comes up with a measure that will provide true blooded Filipinos more than equal opportunities for investment, then the nagging problem of poverty and other related economic quandaries will perpetually be a part of our system.


     
  7. Bienvenido

    Bienvenido FULL MEMBER

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    General Catapang: AFP has bigger wars, support modernization
    August 19, 2014

    [​IMG]

    Armed Forces of the Philippines Chief of Staff General Gregorio Pio Catapang told Jessica Soho on GMA News TV’s State of the Nation that the military has greater wars to go to and the armed forces has no time for Coup d’état or to join politics.

    “In the 21st century we will be faced by global problems, global terrorism, global climate change, global maritime concern, and then global transnational crime,” General Catapang explained.

    The AFP Chief of Staff added that our military will be having a minimum defense posture. In boxing, our military, even though a bantam weight will not be knocked out immediately by a heavy weight and can survive at least the first round, Catapang explained.

    In the said interview, Catapang asked for continued support for the AFP modernization program. He asked for supplemental budget from the executive branch through legislation after DAP was declared partially unconstitutional by the Supreme Court.

    Catapang also envisions military camps to be upgraded as part of military upgrading.


    ___________________________________


    Upgrade of military facilities in Pagasa Island ‘is a go’
    August 19, 2014

    [​IMG]

    The Philippine Air Force and Department of Foreign Affairs confirmed that Rancudo airstrip at Pagasa Island part of Kalayaan Group of Islands in West Philippine Sea will be upgraded and repaired. This is amid the Philippine government’s call for a moratorium.

    “We have been occupying Pag-asa before the 2002 DOC, so any improvements there should not be a violation of the DOC,” DFA spokesman Charles Jose said.

    “Ever since we signed the 2002 DOC, I think the Philippines has been faithful. We have not taken any unilateral action to violate the DOC.”

    Chief of Air Staff Maj. Gen. Edgar Fallorina said first stage of repair is a go. The first stage will involve dredging activities to enable ships from approaching the island. Second stage is the actual repair of the air strip.

    PhP480 million is allocated to upgrade Navy and Air Force facilities in Pagasa Island.

    A firm already won the first stage repair and expected to be finished within the year.

    On the other hand, China is calling all Filipino troops and civilians occupying Kalayaan Group of Islands including citizens of Pagasa Island. China claims virtually the entire South China Sea including West Philippine Sea.

    ___________________________________


    [​IMG]

    President Benigno S. Aquino III, assisted by Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin, leads the Ceremonial Distribution of Assault Rifles to the Philippine Army (PA) and Philippine Navy (PN) Marine troops at the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) General Headquarters Canopy of the Camp General Emilio Aguinaldo in Quezon City on Thursday (August 14, 2014). One of the major programs of the AFP Modernization is to upgrade the mission-essential capability requirements of the AFP in terms of firepower for the ground troops. Under this program, the acquisition of 50,629 units of Assault Rifles, 5.56mmM4 was prioritized to supplement and replace the early models of M-16 and M-16A1 assault rifles. The whole project will be delivered within the year and will be shipped in two batches. (Photo by Gil Nartea / Malacañang Photo Bureau)


    [​IMG]

    The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) display the newly acquired M4 assault rifle before the ceremonial distribution at Camp Aguinaldo in Quezon City. The AFP said that, a total of 50,629 rifles were bought from United States-based Remington Outdoor Company. The first 27,300 units will be given to the Philippine Army and Philippine Marine Corps while the remaining 23,329 rifles are expected to be delivered in December 2014.
     
  8. Bienvenido

    Bienvenido FULL MEMBER

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    Binay: becoming the country’s president is my childhood dream
    August 19,2014

    [​IMG]

    Vice President Jejomar Binay positively answered reporters when asked if he is ready to face President Aquino in the coming 2016 elections. However, he believes that Aquino won’t seek for a second term amid PNoy’s openness to a political charter change.

    Binay added that becoming the country’s President is his childhood dream.

    He said that he can use his 21-year experience from becoming the mayor of country’s business capital. He added he has proper education that he can use as country’s president.

    Binay also distanced himself from DAP. “To those who are saying that we will not qualify because of DAP, we are not supporting DAP. We are against it.”

    “I think that the decision of the Supreme Court should be respected. The position of Chief Justice Sereno is also correct. That is against the Constitution. Now they are saying that it is not, so they agree to it. DAP is wrong,” Binay added.

    _______________________________

    Joint venture wins bidding for supply of AFP protection gear

    By Alexis Romero (The Philippine Star)
    August 18, 2014

    MANILA, Philippines - A joint venture between Israeli firm Achidatex Nazareth Elite and local company Colorado Shipyard Corp. has won the bidding to supply 44,080 sets of force protection equipment for soldiers.

    The STAR learned over the weekend that the Department of National Defense (DND) issued the notice of award to the joint venture last July 28.

    The project involves the acquisition of 44,080 sets of force protection equipment for Army and Marine troops. The equipment will protect soldiers who are serving on the frontlines of security operations.

    The government has allotted P1.763 billion for the project.

    Sources said the DND will save around P300,000 if the deal with Achidatex and Colorado pushes through.

    The joint venture, however, was not the lowest bidder for the project.

    During the opening of bids held last year, South Korean firm Kolon Global Corp. submitted the lowest bid, offering to supply the equipment for P894 million. The bid price would have allowed the government to save P870,000.

    The bids and awards committee, however, disqualified Kolon after the company failed to meet some requirements during the post-qualification phase.

    A defense department post-qualification team said Kolon’s goods did not meet certain standards aimed at ensuring the protection of soldiers in the field. The team said all ballistic inserts of samples submitted by Kolon did not conform to dimensional requirements since they have shorter measurements.

    Joint venture wins bidding for supply of AFP protection gear | Headlines, News, The Philippine Star | philstar.com


    [​IMG]
     
  9. Cossack25A1

    Cossack25A1 SENIOR MEMBER

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    Aside from RPG-7, are we considering other anti-armor weapons or other launchers such as the Mk.153 which can be used to destroy bunkers.
     
  10. Zero_wing

    Zero_wing SENIOR MEMBER

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    Those are for other bids comrade i hope it includes spike missiles from Israel
     
  11. Cossack25A1

    Cossack25A1 SENIOR MEMBER

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    I just hope that an portable anti-bunker weapon - thermobaric armed and anti-tank missile will be bought. The RPG-7 is more suited at taking out enemy armor and most of the insurgents across the PH may likely use caves as hiding posts and the ATGM can be either portable or mounted into vehicles like the V-150 or Simba.
     
  12. Cossack25A1

    Cossack25A1 SENIOR MEMBER

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    ALI: Common station at Trinoma will benefit more people
    ABS-CBNnews.com

    Posted at 08/20/2014 1:28 PM | Updated as of 08/20/2014 1:28 PM


    MANILA, Philippines - Ayala Land on Wednesday maintained that putting the MRT-LRT common station in front of its Trinoma mall would be beneficial for more people, especially with the on-going development of the Quezon City business district.

    "The technical argument showed Trinoma is the ideal location for that (common station) and more people will benefit if it is located in Trinoma," Ayala Land president Bobby Dy said in an interview on ANC.

    This comes after the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) proposed two common stations, one near SM North EDSA and another near Trinoma mall, as a "win-win" solution to the ongoing legal battle between the two parties.

    SM, which signed a 2009 memorandum of agreement with the Light Rail Transit Authority (LRTA) for the common station, was able to obtain a temporary restraining order issued by the Supreme Court preventing the transfer of the station to Trinoma.

    Dy said the decision on two common stations would be up to the DOTC to decide.
    But Dy cited three reasons why Trinoma would be a better location for the common station. "More people would benefit with the Quezon City Vertis North business district (next to Trinoma)... And government will save about a billion pesos, instead of doing 2 stations. Third is quite important, it will be much faster to execute, which means the public stands to benefit with that infrastructure project in a faster way," Dy said.

    Ayala Land is currently developing Vertis North, located next to Trinoma, as a mixed-use urban complex. The company allocated P65 billion to develop the National Housing Authority (NHA) property, which is touted to become Quezon City's central business district.

    Phase 1, which would cost P15 billion, will have three new high-rise residential towers, two high-rise office buildings, a lifestyle mall and a Seda hotel.

    ------
    ALI: Common station at Trinoma will benefit more people | ABS-CBN News
    ------

    To all every one reading this, I would present you a map of the original plan and the new (more like retarded) plan.The define what "Common Station" means.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    What the station would look like had the Original Plan was followed:

    [​IMG]

    If you were a passenger of a train who would transfer from Line A to Line B or Line C, which of the plans would make sense?

    The "Original Plan"(by SM group) where all train lines terminates at a large station where passengers would HAVE NOT TO WALK MORE THAN 50 METERS just to get into a train heading to a different line.

    Or

    The "New Plan" (by Ayala Holdings) where two lines are connected with the third line separated and only connected by a walkway that is ABOUT 350 METERS LONG, FORCING THE PASSENGERS TO WALK GREAT DISTANCES aside from going in into their mall (though the mall opens at 10AM PH Standard Time (same as Hong Kong Time)) just to transfer to a different line and this doesn't include the rush hour scenario where people would line up just to ride the trains...and the morning rush hour is around 5AM to 9AM.

    I upper-case some words here because some Pinoys here would likely support the "New Plan." I do not support SM but their plan for the station is more logical and makes more sense.
     
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2014
  13. Bienvenido

    Bienvenido FULL MEMBER

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    Philippine Army to get all 28 upgraded APCs by Q1 of 2015
    August 21,2014

    Philippine News Agency – The Philippine Army (PA) announced that the delivery of its 28 Israeli upgraded APCs (armored personnel carriers) is scheduled for the first quarter of 2015.

    This was revealed by Army spokesperson Lt. Col. Noel Detoyato Thursday.

    “Delivery of all APCs is scheduled for the first quarter of 2015,” he added.

    The Department of National Defense (DND) earlier announced that the payment for the PHP 882 million upgraded armored personnel carrier (APC), bagged by Israeli defense manufacturer Elbit Systems Ltd., will be done in three tranches.

    Dr. Peter Paul Galvez, Defense spokesperson, said first payment will be pegged at P405 million, the second will be PHP 335 million and the third at PHP 142 million.

    Elbit Systems Ltd., formally announced the signing of the PHP 882 million deal (roughly USD20 million) last June 22.

    Upgrades include 25 mm unmanned turrets, 12.7 mm remote controlled weapon stations (RCWS) and fire control systems (FCS) for 90 mm turrets.

    The APCs, 28 in all, will be supplied over a one-year period.

    The contract marks a significant breakthrough for Elbit Systems, as it is the first one awarded to the company in the Philippines.

    “We are very pleased to be awarded our first contract for the Philippines Armed Forces, which we hope will be followed by others. Our extensive portfolio and our vast experience enable us to offer our customers advanced solutions, answering the specific requirements of various combat vehicles, and this award further positions us as world leaders in the field of ground vehicle upgrades,” Elbit Systems’ Land and C41 general manager Udi Vered said.

    The APCs are for the use of the Philippine Army.

    The latter operates around 343 AFVs (armored fighting vehicles) and APCs.

    Around 85 percent of these AFVs are on green status (fully mission capable) while another 10 percent are on yellow status (undergoing repair) and five percent are on red (beyond repair)

    150 of these are the United Kingdom-built GKN “Simba” with the remaining AFVs consisting of US designed V-150 and V-200 APCs, M-113 “Bradley”, Turkish made ACV-300s and British Scorpion CVRTs.

    These vehicles give the PA its armor capability and are organized into a 14-vehicle mechanized infantry companion for deployment with regular units.



    __________________________________

    Indian warship arrives in Manila for port visit
    August 20,2014

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    Philippine News Agency – One of India’s most modern surface combatants, the INS Sahyadri, arrived Wednesday in Manila South Harbor for a routine port call and visit which aims to strengthen the naval ties between the two countries.

    The INS Sahyadri is a Shivalik class stealth multi-role frigate constructed by Mazagon Dock Limited in Mumbai, India.

    Construction of the vessel began in 2003 and was completed by 2011.

    Prior her arrival in Manila, she was one of the participants in Exercise RIMPAC 2014 in Hawaii last July.

    INS Sahyadri steamed around 5,000 nautical miles (9,000 kilometers) to get to Manila.

    She boasts of an array of weaponry in her arsenal. Long range anti-ship missiles, medium and short range surface to air missiles augmented by powerful guns of different calibers provide a formidable shield against all types of threats.

    Two multi-role helicopters carried by the ship act as force multipliers in all maritime scenarios due to their versatility and long range.

    Commissioned on July 2012, INS Sahyadri is commanded by Capt. Jyotin Raina and is manned by 25 officers and 255 sailors.

    During her stay in Manila, the ship would undertake operational turn around while the ship’s crew would participate in various events like professional interaction, sports events and social fixtures.

    Manila is a regular port of all for Indian naval ships. INS Satpura, Ranvijay, Shakti, and Kirch visited Manila in 2013.
     
  14. Bienvenido

    Bienvenido FULL MEMBER

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    [​IMG]

    AFP modernization contributed largely to the 63% Infrastructure spending surged

    August 21, 2014

    Due to various infrastructure projects, government spending rose by nearly two thirds in June of this year. According to the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) on Wednesday, this year infrastructure spending rose by 62.7 percent to 24.4 billion pesos, bringing total government disbursements to P987.7 billion in the first six months of 2014.

    DBM added that a total government disbursements as of end-June registered a P97-billion, or 10.9-percent, increase over the P890.8 billion recorded in 2013. Budget Secretary Florencio Abad said. “These infrastructure projects actually open up job opportunities, helping us bring immediate- and long-term benefits to communities around the country,”

    Increase in infrastructure disbursements in June was due largely to the release of P4.9 billion for the Aircraft Acquisition Project under the Revised AFP Modernization. Also, key infrastructure projects under the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) contributed in the rise of spending for the month.

    Abad also noted that subsidies to government-owned or -controlled corporations (GOCCs) helped increase in June disbursements, going up by nearly six-fold to reach P46.3 billion for the month, compared to the P7 billion tracked in June 2013. Electrification projects under the National Electrification Administration also brought about the increase.

    According to the report, this increase in infrastructure spending is one of the key pillars of the present administration’s economic platform. By 2016, the government targets to spend at least 5 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) on infrastructure. A remarkable growth compared to 2010 which is only 1.8 percent.


    _____________________


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    Philippine Army night combat training

    ______________________


    Law proposed to increase public service airtime of TV, radio stations
    August 20,2014

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    Sorsogon First District Representative Evelina Escudero proposed House Bill 4641 to require broadcast media to increase public service airtime to boost government’s capability to reach Filipinos nationwide. This will pave way to effective dissemination of important public information and issues.

    “Broadcast media is the best tool to relay information and motivate people to participate in nation building. It is the most effective vehicle to carry out the government’s ultimate goal to promote the objectives of sound government,” Escudero explained.

    Escudero added that broadcast media has a great influence in shaping public perceptions and behavior, changing social attitudes and bringing about social integration.

    The lady from Sorsogon noted that health, road and traffic discipline, good values, public safety, welfare rights and benefits and disaster preparedness are matters of public interest and concern.

    “Thus, the government should relay and communicate the public policy on these matters through the use of the most effective and accessible means, the broadcast media,” she added.

    Moreover, the measure wants to guarantee and confirm the social responsibility of broadcast media (television and radio stations) in serving the interest and welfare of the people.

    If implemented, any TV or radio station who will not comply will be grounded for suspension, revocation or non-renewal of license to operate.



     
  15. Cossack25A1

    Cossack25A1 SENIOR MEMBER

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    If the 60/40 Economic restriction is NOT remove, this happens.

    Policy delay has Japanese carmakers reviewing Philippine expansion plans | Economy | GMA News Online

    Policy delay has Japanese carmakers reviewing Philippine expansion plans
    By ROSEMARIE FRANCISCO, Reuters August 21, 2014 10:05am

    Top Japanese automakers in the Philippines are threatening to shift production to cheaper Southeast Asian countries as the government drags its feet on a plan to rebuild its shrinking car manufacturing industry.

    The potential pullout of production lines by Toyota Motor Corp. and Mitsubishi Motors, which have a combined 50,000 vehicle annual capacity in the country, would mean the Philippines could lose more than 1,000 jobs and millions of dollars worth of planned and existing investments.

    Time is running out, industry officials say, because there's less than two years left in the term of President Benigno Aquino III, who has been backing the plan.

    "I believe that if this does not get approved this quarter and signed by the president by the end of the year and even in the first quarter next year, then let's forget about it because nothing will happen anymore," said Ferdinand Raquelsantos, head of the motor vehicle parts industry group MVPMAP.

    The original government plan includes tax incentives to help rebuild the country's tiny auto industry and turn it into a major manufacturing hub.

    To cheaper countries

    But two years of government and industry debates, revisions and disagreements over how best to grow the auto sector have carmakers saying they may move to cheaper countries like Malaysia and Indonesia.

    The reforms have also been delayed because Manila wants the industry to ramp up production first to produce 40,000 units of a single car model annually before they can use the incentives. Industry insiders say only Toyota could meet that requirement with no incentives.

    The carmakers had hoped to capitalize on the government roadmap to boost local production after car sales hit record highs for several months this year on robust consumer spending, and vehicle ownership remains the lowest among Southeast Asia's five biggest economies at just around 35 per 1,000 people.

    "We have been telling the government, please issue the roadmap so there will be a clear policy direction and basis for Toyota's investments in the Philippines," Rommel Gutierrez, spokesman of Toyota Philippines, told Reuters. Gutierrez also serves as president of the auto industry group CAMPI.

    "The mother company in Japan has many options, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia... As early as now, it is already scouting (for locations)," Gutierrez said, adding it's debating whether to continue production of Vios compact and Innova in the Philippines in the absence of clear policy direction.

    The Philippine unit of Mitsubishi Motors, which has been planning to more than triple its existing capacity after purchasing a former Ford Motors plant earlier this year, hasn't decided on starting local production of new models.

    "Without the EO (executive order), I am not so sure if we will launch a new car or not," Hikosaburo Shibata, president and chief executive of Mitsubishi Philippines, told Reuters.

    Running out of time

    Government officials declined to comment on a target date for the roadmap, but automakers say based on discussions with the government the plan will likely be released this year.

    "We have to balance. It's always a cost-benefit trade-off," said Trade Secretary Gregory Domingo, adding the government is continuing consultations with industry and state agencies.

    Carmakers are hoping the plan will include adequate fiscal and non-fiscal incentives such as tax credits and common testing facilities for auto parts makers to ease manufacturing disadvantages. It costs around $1,800 to $2,000 more to produce a locally assembled car than it is to import a complete vehicle, according to industry estimates.

    The Philippines ceased being a car exporter after Ford closed local production in 2012 partly due to increasing imports of pre-owned cars, most of them smuggled, and tariff relaxation after trade deals. – Reuters

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    By the way, there is another PH user here that I usally see when I was lurking before I made an account here. He usually have "verbal" clashes with Zero_Wing...it seems he is a bit "in-active" at the moment.
     
    Last edited: Aug 22, 2014