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The second package of the Duterte administration’s Comprehensive Tax Reform Program that seeks to attract more investors by reducing corporate income tax rates, among others, has entered the legislative.

Remittances from overseas Filipino workers continued to grow in November last year, bringing the 11-month tally 5.1 percent higher at $28.24 billion from the year-ago level of $26.88 billion, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) reported yesterday.

The Philippines has managed to stay out of the US list of “notorious markets” for piracy and trademark counterfeiting for the sixth straight year.


WHEN Yosemite Sam, the heavily bearded antagonist of Bugs Bunny grew tired of trying to beat his archenemy, he finally heaved a sigh of frustration and said, “If you can’t beat them, join them.”

Aside from roads and bridges under the government’s Build Build Build program, the other flagship infrastructure project of President Duterte deals with the highway of telecommunications.

A few days after President Duterte signed the first tax reform package into law, the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) issued Revenue Memorandum Circular (RMC) No. 105-2017 to prescribe the withholding tax rates on compensation that shall apply beginning Jan. 1.

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The government is targeting to complete by the end of January the implementing rules and regulation of Republic Act 10963 or the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion Act (TRAIN), according to the Bureau of Internal Revenue.

The Philippine Competition Commission has approved the acquisition of Postal Savings Bank, Inc. by Landbank of the Philippines for the eventual establishment of a financial institution for overseas Filipino workers that President Rodrigo Duterte promised.

The World Bank (WB) has maintained its 6.7 percent growth forecast for the Philippines until 2019, still on the back of strong fundamentals and a monetary policy supportive of growth.

Factory output declined by 8.1 percent in November as tobacco makers remained cautious due to the additional excise tax implemented beginning this month in accordance with the tax reform law, the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) said yesterday.

The inflow of foreign direct investments (FDIs) tripled in October last year, hitting the highest level in 16 months due to continued investor confidence in the country’s strong macroeconomic fundamentals and growth prospects, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) reported yesterday.

The trade deficit widened to 51.8 percent in November due to heavier imports of raw materials, intermediate goods and capital goods, as export growth slowed to its lowest in a year, the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) reported yesterday.

The benchmark Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) pulled back yesterday after soaring to a record high on Tuesday.

The yield of the seven-day term deposits eased anew as liquidity continues to return to the financial system after the Christmas season.

The additional revenue from the implementation of the tax reform law will put the Philippines in a better position to pursue its massive infrastructure program, according to Moody’s Investors Service.

Government underspending is estimated to have dropped to less than one percent in 2017 due to improvements in budget execution, the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) said yesterday.


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