Tag Archives: investments

Treasury launches ‘Premyo’ bonds

THE BUREAU of the Treasury on Monday launched its one-year peso-denominated “Premyo bonds para sa bayan” (Premyo bonds) as part of its bid to lure more small investors to government securities.

Here, four players can each win up to P1 million in cash or non-cash prizes such as real estate for as low as P500 in investment.

During the bond’s launch yesterday at the Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP), National Treasurer Rosalia V. De Leon announced that three property developers — DoubleDragon Properties Corp., Vista Land and Landscapes, Inc. as well as Megaworld Corp. — have partnered with the government to offer grand prizes during quarterly draws.

Ms. De Leon said the Premyo bonds are designed to encourage Filipinos to save while contributing to nation building, by reducing the minimum investment “to just P500” from the usual floor of P5,000. The Treasury also made it more convenient to invest by providing the option of applying online. Investors can also acquire the bonds through authorized selling agents.

“Premyo Bond, in small ways hopefully, could demonstrate that, if done right, digitalization of finance offers a gateway to achieve significant inroads towards financial inclusion and payments efficiency,” she said in a speech.

In a disclosure yesterday, Doubledragon said one winner will win a P6-million unit at Hotel 101 Fort in Bonifacio Global City in Taguig City in one of the four draws.

“The Premyo Bonds are a great way to incentivize first-time retail bond investors to try out investment instruments like this as a way for them to optimize and diversify their savings. It is also a great way to support our country and help spur inclusive growth,” DoubleDragon Chairman Edgar J. “Injap” Sia II said in the disclosure.

Under its cash reward tier, a total of P3 million will be raffled off during the quarterly draws where one winner will win P1 million, 10 winners to win P100,000 while 50 winners can win P20,000.

“On every cash rewards draw date, each Premyo Bonds unit shall be assigned a 20-character electronic Rewards Number (“e-RN”) using the Cash Rewards application system,” the Treasury said in a notice.

It added that “a bondholder in possession of multiple Premyo Bonds units may win multiple times.”

In a Nov. 22 notice, the Treasury said that the bonds will be in “scripless form” and will have a minimum required investment of P500 and integral multiples of P500 thereafter. The issue has an initial size of P3 billion but the Treasury has the option to upsize.

“The Bureau of the Treasury has the option to upsize, but our target right now is P3 billion and we can still continue the offering and get a higher volume,” Ms. De Leon said during Monday’s launch.

The debt papers carry an interest rate of three percent per annum to be paid quarterly and subject to a 20% final tax.

While there will be no maximum investment, a bondholder can have a maximum of 20,000 Premyo bond units worth P10 million per selling agent to qualify for the rewards scheme.

Eligible investors for the bond issuance includes individuals who have a local bank account, cooperatives, qualified associations such as nonstock and loans associations as well as trust entities, among others.

The bond offer period runs from Nov. 25 to Dec. 13.

“When subscription has reached a level deemed sufficient by the BTr, the BTr shall announce the termination and closure of the offer period through the BTr Web site or in any electronic financial information providers chosen by the BTr,” it said.

Selling agents for the transactions are BDO Unibank, Inc.; BDO Capital and Investment Corp.; Chinabank Corp.; China Bank Capital Corp.; Development Bank of the Philippines; First Metro Investment Corp.; Land Bank of the Philippines and Metropolitan Bank & Trust Co. — Beatrice M. Laforga

New platform for investments in ancestral lands

Under the Mindanao Indigenous Peoples (IP) Desk, which was launched on Tuesday, businesses and investors alike will help guide companies in securing free, prior and informed consent (FPIC) from IP groups, among others. FPIC is required by the Indigenous Peoples Rights Act before business can enter IP areas.

An initiative of International Alert (IA), National Commission on Indigenous Peoples (NCIP), and the Mindanao Business Council (MinBC), the desk will have members from the three organizations, officials of local government units, and representatives of IPs. The desk will also feature a database on conflict information and ancestral domains, besides resource maps and development plans on ancestral domains.

The group wants the IP Desk to be both about wealth creation alongside the protection and promotion of the rights of IPs, IA Deputy Country Manager Nikki Philline C. de la Rosa said.

“The IP Desk is the crystallization of the desire to institutionalize the relationship between government, business and the IP communities,” said IA Country Manager Francisco J. Lara, Jr.

On Tuesday, Mr. Lara from IA, NCIP Chairperson Leonor O. Quintayo, and MinBC Chairman Vicente T. Lao also ceremonially signed a memorandum of cooperation “agreeing to collaborate and support the establishment of an IP Desk in MinBC.” The original signing was “last month,” Ms. de la Rosa said on the sidelines of the event.

A technical working group from the parties will finalize the IP Desk’s terms of reference including “roles, responsibilities and implementing guidelines.”

For his part, MinBC Executive Director Rolando A. Torres said that current business challenges “dynamics in frameworks, access to information and security.”

Besides pointing out “inconsistencies in local and national policies and political boundary conflicts in ancestral lands,” there are instances where “communities are misrepresented.” There is also a “lack of information on the location of investments,” Mr. Torres said.

There is a “need of education and information on the traditions and practices of indigenous communities,” said Mr. Torres.

Mr. Torres acknowledged that investors need to protect their investments, employees and facilities but said that there are instances where there are “semblances of creating private armies.”

“All concerns would lead to the most important issue faced by investors… the challenge on how to regain the trust of the communities,” said Mr. Torres.

According to Mr. Torres, IPs have been subject to “unfriendly policies before of the government.” Also, “previous investors have been “resorting to payoffs to continue business” and some have gone around the process of securing FPIC.”

There are also “concerns on harming the environment” by investors entering IP areas and the “cases of human rights violations” prevalent during the ’70s and early ’80s are still remembered by IPs, said Mr. Torres.

In 17 years, the NCIP has granted 180 certificates of ancestral domain which translates to 4.7 hectares of land, with 92 certificates granted in Mindanao, translating to 2.2 hectares of land. — E. E. Escaño

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WB support for Mindanao

BusinessWorld Online
July 16, 2014

THE WORLD BANK Group has proposed a $119-million (P5.17 billion) funding for infrastructure projects in Mindanao, in support of the peace process between the Philippine Government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front.
The World Bank Group, in a press release, said the funding will support farm-to-market roads, bridges, communal irrigation systems and potable water in the region, including areas in the Autonomous Region in Mindanao (ARMM).

World Bank President Jim Yong Kim said in a press conference the funding is part of the Washington-based multilateral’s support of the peace process in Mindanao.

“When there’s no peace, there’s no prosperity,” Mr. Kim said.

“We think these are the kinds of investments that are critical in moving forward,” he added.

The $119-million grant forms part of the $508 million earmarked under the proposed Philippines Rural Development Program (PRDP), a six-year program for infrastructure projects and livelihood programs.

The PRDP will be presented to the World Bank Group’s Board of Executive Directors next month for approval.

The International Finance Corp. (IFC), the WB’s private sector arm, is also looking at proposing investments that will generate at least 6,000 jobs in Mindanao.

The WB has formed a new country partnership strategy (CPS) in the Philippines where the multilateral has committed to provide $3.2 billion in assistance from 2015 to 2018 and another $1 billion for investments in business and industry. — Mikhail Franz E. Flores

MRDP to revive critical watersheds in Mindanao

The Philippine Star
By Sherwin B. Manual
March 13, 2011

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Agriculture (DA) is rehabilitating major watersheds critical to the effort to boost food production in Mindanao.

The Mindanao Rural Development Prog-ram (MRDP), the DA’s flagship poverty alleviation program, is implementing on-the ground investments to salvage the degrading natural resources in Mindanao, particularly watershed.

Program director Lealyn A. Ramos said these watersheds have great agricultural potentials but are now less productive since they have been overly exploited and misused.

“Watershed sustains life form of plants, animals and human. And aside from providing water, it’s also the source of fiber, food, medicine and livelihoods but most of our watersheds are exploited beyond their capacity,” Ramos added.

To program is implementing environmental projects in 12 critical watersheds in all of the six regions in Mindanao.

These watersheds include RT Lim and Tungawan, Zamboanga Sibugay in Region 9; Linamon, Lanao del Norte and Sogbongcogon, Misamis Oriental in Region 10; Don Marcelino, Davao del Sur and San Isidro, Davao Oriental in Region 11; Kalamansig, Sultan Kudarat and Malapatan, Sarangani Province in Region 12; Nasipit, Agusan del Norte and Gigaquit, Surigao del Norte in Caraga Region and  Datu Odin Sinsuat, Maguindanao and Kapatagan, Lanao del Sur in Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM).

“The sites were selected based certain criteria but most especially the interconnectivity of the upland, the lowland and the coastal areas,” Ramos said.

The program allocates a total of P7 million for each town beneficiary.

The projects implemented are agro-reforestation, river bank stabilization, mangrove rehabilitation, establishment of marine protected area, fish sanctuary and fishery reserves and coral restoration.

Ridge to reef

With focus on Mt. Hamiguitan in San Isidro, Davao Oriental watershed, the ridge-to-reef landscape is expected to nurture more diverse flora and fauna as the local government and MRPD implement a 136-hectare watershed rehabilitation with rubber-based farming on hilly lands amounting to close to P5 million. While, P2 million were earmarked on the coastal areas projects which include 7.5-hectare mangrove rehabilitation and setting up of five hectares fish sanctuary and marine reserves.

The Mt. Hamiguitan mountain range and wild life sanctuary was declared protected area under RA 9303 of 2002. It is home to Mandaya tribe, the Philippine Eagle, important raw materials and some highly prized natural bonsai forming the popular “pygmy forest.”

About three communities in Linamon town have engaged in agroforestry conservation and ecotourism development for its 12 hectares forest cover which house the one of province’s tourist spot the Tinago Falls.

The town of Don Marcelino has completed its 200-hectare Nuvada Watershed reforestation and has another on-going project.

Similarly, RT Lim town has completed the 100-hectare reforestation activities.

The coastal community of Kalamansig is now rearing mangroves planted to its 20 hectares coastal area which is part of its P2 million mangrove rehabilitation project.

The 100-hectare agro-reforestation program in Nasipit, Agusan del Norte is now thriving and the community is seeing the promise of its fruit trees.

While ARMM has planted various fruit-bearing trees in 128-hectare area in the mountains of Datu Odin Sinusat town and mangroves in a 15-hectare coast line.

Holistic approach

“We aim to holistically arrest the environmental problem. We know that activities in the upland areas have downstream impact in the low land communities and the coastal areas,” said Ramos.

“We started to implement these projects in 2008 and most of these hard investments were reported to be complete but we need to wait for the full gestation period to really see the impacts of these,” Ramos said noting that the program and the LGU beneficiaries are positive about the initial results of their efforts.

The report of the Bureau of Water and Soils Management (BSWM) said that in these watersheds, the soils, land and water resources are overly exploited resulting to low productivity of various farm areas.

BSWM is one of the attached agencies of the Program tasked to undertake technical support for the program along with Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR), and the National Commission on the Indigenous Peoples (NCIP).

“With appropriate land use technology and farming systems we can revive the agricultural potential of these watersheds,” said Ramos, adding that:

“This (project) is in partnership with the LGUs. Aside from having direct helm of project implementation the vital role of the LGU is legislation the necessary ordinances to sustain and protect upland, lowland and coastal resources.”

Omico eyes Mindanao prospects

By Riza T. Olchondra
Philippine Daily Inquirer
December 06 2010

MANILA, Philippines—Listed mining firm Omico Corp. is considering new mining opportunities all over the country even as it started drilling at a prospective mine in Itogon, Benguet.

“We are talking to a few claimants. We are always looking for new opportunities,” company president and CEO Tommy Kin Hing Tia said in a phone interview.

Tia said Omico was not limiting itself to Luzon. It is already looking at several options in southern Luzon and in Mindanao.

However, Tia could not say when Omico would be able to firm up operating agreements with the said claimants.

“We are hoping that something may develop in six months or so. We will make disclosures as things develop,” Tia said.

Recently, Omico’s mining subsidiary, Omico-Ivanhoe Mining Inc., signed a core drilling agreement with Primo Asia Mining and Drilling Inc.

Ivanhoe is in the process of changing its corporate name to Omico Mining Inc.

The drilling target is a guaranteed minimum of 3,000 aggregate meters divided into seven holes at a maximum depth of 1,000 meters per hole.

The management decided to proceed with the diamond drilling program after finishing the surface geological exploration.

The exploration included surface geological mapping anzad rock grab geochemistry, drainage geochemical survey, soil geochemical survey and reopening of 12 old abandoned tunnels within the approved MPSA No. 278-2009-CAR located at Barangay (village) Ampucao in Itogon, Benguet.