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29th Mindanao Business Conference 2020 | Capacity Building Measures for business survival & continuity pushed

September 7, 2020

The affiliate chambers of the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Mindanao will present the national government during the 29th Mindanao Business Conference on September 10-11, 2020 a package of capacity building measures aimed at ensuring business survival and continuity in the region. The first ever virtual conduct of Mindanao’s biggest business conference of the PCCI will be hosted by the Davao Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Inc. (DCCCII) through online live streaming via ZOOM with a record audience expected to participate in the online event despite restrictions on travel and gatherings brought by the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. “With theme, Mindanao: Journeying to the New Normal, we recognize the urgent need to boost confidence to overcome emerging challenges and opportunities,” said Ma. Teresa A. Alegrio, PCCI Area Vice President for Mindanao. “This stems from a deep understanding of what the new normal presents so that responses to meet them are carefully crafted.” MinBizCon is an annual event organized by the PCCI that aims to create a venue for businessmen, key industry players, government executives, and other private sector leaders to discuss economic concerns and opportunities in Mindanao resulting to policy actions for the development of the region. Through PCCI Mindanao Resolution no. 2020-004 (A Resolution Endorsing To The IATF-EID Proposed Intervention Measures For Business Survival And Continuity of Mindanao MSMEs and Other Industries) the 42 local Chambers of Mindanao will be requesting the National Government’s immediate and urgent intervention to prioritize a package of proposed recommendations aimed at ensuring  the business survival and continuity of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs), in the manufacturing and industry, and agricultural sector. MSME’s constitute over 90 percent of the number of business establishments nationwide and in Mindanao. The resolution covers Health Care Capacity, Infrastructure, Economic Stimulus, Structural Reforms, Capacity Building, and Domestic Tourism. Capacity Building Among the Capacity Building measures being championed by PCCI Mindanao for urgent government action in prioritizing the following proposed recommendations for the business survival and continuity of MSMEs in the manufacturing, industry, and agricultural sector:   ·        For DTI to extend technical assistance and financial support to Local Chambers of Commerce & Industry (LCCI) and other trade or sectoral associations in the preparation of Business Continuity Plans to enable their dissemination to Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) who may wish to apply for commercial loans under facilities of the Small Business Corporation in the LCCIs respective localities; ·        For DTI, DOST and DOLE to immediately implement Retooling and Re-Training Programs for MSME companies and workers of sectors belonging to non-essential goods and services; ·        For DOH to include as an urgent priority in its policy measures to make available RT-PCR testing kits at an affordable price through pooled purchasing for large scale agro-industrial and industries employing more than 200 workers and ancillary service providers, to enable them to continue unhampered operations, minimize lay-offs and most importantly, disruptions in key supply chains such as food, food processing and health related products and services; ·        For DOST to extend funding and technical support for Research and Development to City and State Colleges, Universities and Technical schools related to health care efforts that may directly impact the area’s COVID-19 response; and,   ·        For NEDA to create an Investment Promotions Committee in the Regional Development Councils in order to monitor the implementation of localized incentives to be implemented. The foregoing proposals were extensively discussed across all the 42 Local Chambers of Commerce in Mindanao during several Regional Consultations with PCCI President Ambassador Benedicto Yujuico, PCCI Mindanao Area Vice President Maria Teresa R. Alegrio, and PCCI Regional Governors Arturo Milan (South Eastern Mindanao), Roderico R. Bioco (Northern Mindanao), Paul Gudmalin (Western Mindanao), Pete Marquez (Central Mindanao), Aldrin Ibbo (BARMM), Julie Senense (Eastern (CARAGA) Mindanao) and Loreta Sy (South Western Mindanao) with Promote NorMin Foundation President Elpidio M. Paras. (PCCI Mindanao) 

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29th Mindanao Business Conference | PCCI Mindanao champions Infrastructure Initiatives for business survival & continuity

September 7, 2020

The affiliate chambers of the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Mindanao is championing a package of infrastructure intervention measures aimed at ensuring business survival and continuity during the 29th Mindanao Business Conference on September 10-11, 2020. The first ever virtual hosting of Mindanao’s biggest business conference of the PCCI will be hosted by the Davao Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Inc. (DCCCII) through online live streaming via ZOOM with a record audience expected to participate in the virtual event despite restrictions on travel and gatherings brought by the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. “With theme, Mindanao: Journeying to the New Normal, we recognize the urgent need to boost confidence to overcome emerging challenges and opportunities,” said Ma. Teresa A. Alegrio, PCCI Area Vice President for Mindanao. “This stems from a deep understanding of what the new normal presents so that responses to meet them are carefully crafted.” MinBizCon is an annual event organized by the PCCI that aims to create a venue for businessmen, key industry players, government executives, and other private sector leaders to discuss economic concerns and opportunities in Mindanao resulting to policy actions for the development of the region. Through PCCI Mindanao Resolution no. 2020-004 (A Resolution Endorsing To The IATF-EID Proposed Intervention Measures For Business Survival And Continuity of Mindanao MSMEs and Other Industries) the 42 local Chambers of Mindanao will be requesting the National Government’s immediate and urgent intervention to prioritize a package of proposed recommendations aimed at ensuring  the business survival and continuity of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs), in the manufacturing and industry, and agricultural sector. MSME’s constitute over 90 percent of the number of business establishments nationwide and in Mindanao. The resolution covers Health Care Capacity, Infrastructure, Economic Stimulus, Structural Reforms, Capacity Building, and Domestic Tourism. Infrastructure Initiatives Among the infrastructure intervention measure being championed by PCCI Mindanao are the following: ·        For DOE, DPWH & DOTr to re-start the implementation of the following strategic infrastructure projects which are included in the Build-Build-Build program and the approved RDC Infrastructure projects of the national government: Shelter Projects under the Marawi Rehabilitation project; Mindanao-Visayas Interconnection Project; Rehabilitation of the Agus and Pulangi Hydropower Complexes; Mindanao Railway; Expansion of the Laguindingan Airport; Panguil Bay Bridge, and Improvement of Night Landing and Runway facilities of Secondary Airports all over Mindanao. ·        For the Department of Finance (DOF) to prioritize funding allocation and procurement of services for all pending DPWH-DTI ROLL-IT projects to expedite and efficiently transport raw materials from agricultural areas to main processing or manufacturing centers; ·        For the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) to provide access for local/Private Telecommunications Companies, Cable TV, Internet and Value Added Service Providers to their existing tower facilities and infrastructure including unused internet bandwidth, to fast track deployment of broadband internet services to underserved areas in compliance with its mandate of bringing information and communications technology to all Filipinos; ·        For DICT to enjoin the National Electrification Agency (NEA) to suspend its recent rate increase in Pole Rental Fees for rural electric cooperatives to reduce the costs for Telcos, Cable TV and Internet Service Providers to consequently stop these being passed on to consumers, and ultimately enable more people especially in remote areas, gain access to affordable communications that provide urgent, essential and timely information during this time of the pandemic; ·        For DILG to order the LGUs and other government agencies, to reduce the number of permits now being required in the building and erection of Telco cell site tower and radio facilities and in the roll out and installation of fiber optic and coaxial cables underground and aboveground, in order to fast track the deployment of much needed Broadband Internet infrastructure nationwide which is crucial to the success of DepEd’s online education program. The foregoing proposals were extensively discussed across all the 42 Local Chambers of Commerce in Mindanao during several Regional Consultations with PCCI President Ambassador Benedicto Yujuico, PCCI Mindanao Area Vice President Maria Teresa R. Alegrio, and PCCI Regional Governors Arturo Milan (South Eastern Mindanao), Roderico R. Bioco (Northern Mindanao), Paul Gudmalin (Western Mindanao), Pete Marquez (Central Mindanao), Aldrin Ibbo (BARMM), Julie Senense (Eastern (CARAGA) Mindanao) and Loreta Sy (South Western Mindanao) with Promote NorMin Foundation President Elpidio M. Paras. (PCCI Mindanao) 

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29th Mindanao Business Conference 2020 | PCCI Mindanao endorses ‘Bubble Markets’ to revive domestic tourism

September 7, 2020

The affiliate chambers of the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Mindanao will endorse to the national government measures aimed at capturing “Bubble Markets’ for the revival of domestic tourism in the region during the 29th Mindanao Business Conference on September 10-11, 2020. The first ever virtual conduct of Mindanao’s biggest business conference of the PCCI will be hosted by the Davao Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Inc. (DCCCII) through online live streaming via ZOOM with a record audience expected to participate in the online event despite restrictions on travel and gatherings brought by the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. “With theme, Mindanao: Journeying to the New Normal, we recognize the urgent need to boost confidence to overcome emerging challenges and capitalize on opportunities,” said Ma. Teresa A. Alegrio, PCCI Area Vice President for Mindanao. “This stems from a deep understanding of what the new normal presents so that responses to meet them are carefully crafted.” MinBizCon is an annual event organized by the PCCI that aims to create a venue for businessmen, key industry players, government executives, and other private sector leaders to discuss economic concerns and opportunities in Mindanao resulting to policy actions for the development of the region. Through PCCI Mindanao Resolution no. 2020-004 (A Resolution Endorsing To The IATF-EID Proposed Intervention Measures For Business Survival And Continuity of Mindanao MSMEs and Other Industries) the 42 local Chambers of Mindanao will be requesting the National Government’s immediate and urgent intervention to prioritize a package of proposed recommendations aimed at ensuring  the business survival and continuity of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs), in the manufacturing and industry, and agricultural sector. MSME’s constitute over 90 percent of the number of business establishments nationwide and in Mindanao. The resolution covers Health Care Capacity, Infrastructure, Economic Stimulus, Structural Reforms, Capacity Building, and Domestic Tourism. Domestic Tourism Among the measures to be presented by PCCI Mindanao to revive Domestic Tourism during the MinBizCon are the following: ·        For DOT to consider "Bubble" connectivity: Select safe markets from where tourists can travel to similar “Bubble” destinations. DOT to coordinate the guidelines for  identifying “Bubble” markets with the national, regional and local IATFs; ·        For Regional DOT offices to promote weekend staycations from nearby cities in each region, making up the safe "bubble" market, no foreign or other tourists from abroad allowed. DOT accredited and sanctioned hotels with strict safety protocols to be utilized in this recovery program; ·        For LGUs to start campaign to capture the Mindanao "bubble" market. Focus on road travelers with pre-arranged hotel accommodations. Pre-arranged tours would also be encouraged; everything online. ·        For DOT and LGUs to coordinate and endorse with IATF-EID the relaxation of travel restrictions for minors below 21 years old and senior citizens above 60 years old in areas where MGCQ is implemented, provided that accredited tourism destinations which are primarily for outdoor activities, strictly enforce all health and safety protocols subject to regular inspections and evaluation. The foregoing proposals were extensively discussed across all the 42 Local Chambers of Commerce in Mindanao during several Regional Consultations with PCCI President Ambassador Benedicto Yujuico, PCCI Mindanao Area Vice President Maria Teresa R. Alegrio, and PCCI Regional Governors Arturo Milan (South Eastern Mindanao), Roderico R. Bioco (Northern Mindanao), Paul Gudmalin (Western Mindanao), Pete Marquez (Central Mindanao), Aldrin Ibbo (BARMM), Julie Senense (Eastern (CARAGA) Mindanao) and Loreta Sy (South Western Mindanao) with Promote NorMin Foundation President Elpidio M. Paras. (PCCI Mindanao) 

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Gabay Guro ties up with PayMaya to provide financial account for teachers

September 2, 2020

Teachers all around the country will soon have easier access to a financial account and learning resources in one app as Gabay Guro, the flagship advocacy program for teachers of the PLDT-Smart Foundation, partners with PayMaya for its super app for teachers. Through the Gabay Guro app, teachers can soon easily sign up for a PayMaya account which they can use for various digital financial transactions such as paying for online and in-store purchases, sending money, paying bills, buying load, and paying government fees, among others. This will complement the existing features of the app, which provides them access to research materials, community-wide articles, rewards, as well as online lessons to help improve their teaching skills in the new normal. “Providing teachers a PayMaya account within the Gabay Guro app will help enrich the resources available to them, especially as they adapt to our new normal which is increasingly digital. Combined with various learning and other resources available within the app, we are confident that this new platform can help improve their day-to-day teaching lives," said Gabay Guro Chairperson Chaye Cabal-Revilla.  On top of these features, the app will also offer other capabilities such as the ability to receive badges that can be converted into MVP Rewards, availing of promos and training sessions from Gabay Guro partners and mentors, and access to livelihood programs.   Soon, they can also receive cash assistance, incentives, and loans designed for educators and even get additional livelihood opportunities in the e-commerce space through their PayMaya account within the Gabay Guro app. For his part, PayMaya Founder and CEO Orlando Vea said: “Having a digital financial account will help complement the wealth of resources for teachers that will be available in the app. As we all transition to digital, it’s important that we empower our teachers with the right tools and resources so that they are able carry out their work well, for the sake of all Filipino youth everywhere” added Mr. Vea.    "The Department of Education has always acknowledged the Gabay Guro program and the PLDT Group as an important partner of the education sector. We’re happy that the Gabay Guro app, together with PayMaya, will provide our teachers with a holistic platform that will empower and help them thrive in the new normal,” added Department of Education Undersecretary Tonisito Umali.  Digital financial services for education  Enabling teachers with digital financial accounts and capabilities is just the latest way that PayMaya is empowering the education sector. To date, it has enabled over 50 educational institutions all over the country with cashless payments acceptance, allowing schools to conveniently accept tuition payments from parents at the comfort of their homes. At the same time, this mode of payment helps keep school personnel safe by eliminating risks of cash handling in light of the current public health situation.   These efforts are in response to the Department of Education’s directive to implement blended learning that utilizes both online and in-person modalities for education, where students are encouraged to utilize online classes, printed modules, and educational TV and radio broadcast as main learning channels this school year.   Schools enabled by PayMaya with end-to-end digital payment solutions such as PayMaya Checkout online payment gateway and the PayMaya One all-in-one Point of Sale (POS) device include major learning institutions such as the University of the Philippines, the Ateneo De Davao University (ADDU), La Salle Green Hills, Don Bosco Technical Institute of Makati Inc. (DBTI-MAKATI), Nord Anglia International School Manila (NAIS Manila), Malayan Colleges Mindanao (MCM), and University of Immaculate Conception (UIC), among others.   Aside from these digital payment innovations, PayMaya has also rolled out cashless payment ecosystems starting with the PayMaya-powered student ID card in schools including University of the Philippines-Diliman, LPU-Batangas, La Salle Green Hills, and STI, among many others. Students can easily link the PayMaya-powered student ID card to their PayMaya account and maximize for payment transactions even outside the campus at Bancnet-powered payment terminals and ATMs nationwide.   PayMaya is the only end-to-end digital payments ecosystem enabler in the Philippines, with platforms and services that cut across consumers, merchants, and government. Aside from providing payments acceptance for the largest e-Commerce, food, retail and gas merchants in the Philippines, PayMaya enables national and social services agencies, as well as local government units, with digital payments and disbursement services.  Through its app and wallet, PayMaya  provides millions of Filipinos with the fastest way to own a financial account with over 40,000 Add Money touchpoints nationwide, more than double the total number of traditional bank branches in the Philippines combined. Its Smart Padala by PayMaya network of over 30,000 partner touchpoints nationwide serves as last mile digital financial hubs in communities, providing the unbanked and underserved with access to services. To know more about PayMaya's products and services, visit www.PayMaya.com or follow @PayMayaOfficial on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.    Gabay Guro is spearheaded by the PLDT-Smart Foundation and PLDT Managers Club, Inc. The 12-year old program empowers teachers across the country though initiatives in seven key pillars. This includes scholarships, teachers’ trainings, classroom donations, livelihood programs, connectivity & computerization, teachers’ tribute and digital innovations.

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PCCI Mindanao officers designated ARTA Champions

September 2, 2020

PCCI, Anti-Red Tape Authority MOA to implement Ease of Doing Business Act   The affiliate chambers of the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Mindanao have hailed the recent signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between PCCI and the Anti-Red Tape Authority. “This will considerably lighten the burden of businessmen who have to deal with the maze of documentary and other requirements when dealing with government,” said Ma. Teresa R. Alegrio, PCCI Area Vice President for Mindanao. “PCCI Mindanao also welcomes this opportunity to be arbiters in helping our members expedite transactions with local and national government.” The Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI) and the Anti Red Tape Authority (ARTA) signed on August 27 an agreement designating PCCI and its local chapters nationwide to receive complaints from the business sector against violation of Republic Act No. 11032(Ease of Doing Business and Efficient Government Delivery Act of 2018). Signing the agreement were PCCI President Benedicto V. Yujuico and ARTA Director General Jeremiah B. Belgica. The signing was held at the conclusion of the 29th Visayas Area Business Conference held virtually on August 27-28, 2020 and hosted by the Cebu Chamber of Commerce and Industry. Yujuico welcomed the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding, which he describes as putting premium on the role of PCCI as partner of government in ensuring transparency, accountability, and efficient delivery of services in government. “I truly welcome this opportunity to work and partner with ARTA to ensure that the law is implemented and observed by the local government units and other agencies concerned in the delivery of services, especially in applying for business permits and clearances,” Yujuico said. RA 11032  (Ease of Doing Business and Efficient Government Service Delivery Act of 2018) seeks to establish effective practices, aimed at attaining an efficient turnaround of the delivery of government services, the prevention of graft and corruption in government, to promote transparency, reduce red tape and expedite business and non-business related transactions in government. Among the initiatives of ARTA that PCCI welcomed are the enforcement of the 3-7-20 day rule on the automatic approval of applications; the Citizen’s Charter which outlines the list of services offered by the frontline agencies including the steps, documents, fees, and a feedback mechanism; and the establishment of the National Business One-Stop Shop to co-locate, unify and automate the functions of these agencies. Yujuico said that common concerns of business are the delay in the processing of business permits and clearances which usually take longer than one month. With this law, applications with LGUs and national government agencies which are not processed within the 3-7-20 (working)-day rule are "automatically approved by operation of law." “We would not be able to attract new business or investors if we will not correct this systemic process, which actually gives undue burden to our businesses. It should have been addressed long time ago. Nonetheless, we are here to help ARTA successfully implement the law,” Yujuico said. Under the agreement, PCCI’s Area Vice Presidents and Regional Governors are deputized as “ARTA Champions”. Its local chambers are authorized to receive complaints and conduct review before endorsing to ARTA for appropriate action. PCCI has 42 affiliate Local Chambers of Commerce in Mindanao headed by PCCI Mindanao Area Vice President Maria Teresa R. Alegrio, and PCCI Regional Governors Arturo Milan (South Eastern Mindanao), Roderico R. Bioco (Northern Mindanao), Paul Gudmalin (Western Mindanao), Pete Marquez (Central Mindanao), Aldrin Ibbo (BARMM), Julie Senense (Eastern (CARAGA) Mindanao) and Loreta Sy (South Western Mindanao). PCCI shall also conduct seminars and information sessions to generate public awareness. ARTA, on the other hand, shall ensure that complaints endorsed by PCCI are acted upon and promptly, and will provide PCCI the information materials to educate its businesses on the provisions of the law. Likewise, ARTA shall seek the recommendations of PCCI on matters relative to the improvement of regulatory systems, policies, and procedures of various NGAs and LGUs. (PCCI Mindanao)

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Sun Life Foundation responds to pandemic challenges with Rise Brigher PH

August 27, 2020

Sun Life Financial-Philippines Foundation, Inc. (Sun Life Foundation), the philanthropy arm of Sun Life Philippines, is responding to the challenges brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic with a program that promotes financial security and health.   Dubbed “Rise Brighter PH,” the program will consist of Sun Pera-Aralan 2020, a financial management program specifically created for public school teachers, and Sun Life Barangay Health Stations which will serve as accessible sources of primary healthcare to be built in poor and distant municipalities. Each program aims to touch 125,000 lives in the next five years.   “As Sun Life Philippines marks its 125th anniversary this year, Rise Brighter PH is our way of honoring our lifetime partnership with the Filipino people and letting them know that we remain at their side in these trying times,” said Sun Life Philippines CEO and Country Head Benedict Sison who is also Chairman of the Sun Life Foundation. “We have seen Filipinos rise above trials many times over, and we are confident that together, we will prevail.”   Sun Pera-Aralan 2020   Sun Pera-Aralan 2020 is a behavior-based financial management program which makes use of the Peso Sobre tool in helping public school teachers manage their budget, extend their salary until the next pay day, and eventually lessen indebtedness. The program also provides access to volunteer Sun Life advisors whom they can consult for free, as well as a Facebook community where they can share experiences and find inspiration in their fellow teachers.    Initially mounted last year, Sun Pera-Aralan has proven effective in helping public school teachers handle their finances. Reports gathered from the initial batch consisting of 10,224 public school teachers showed that they were not only able to budget better, but even had surplus funds at their discretion when the lockdown was implemented early this year.   This 2020, Sun Pera-Aralan will be implemented in public schools in (areas) with the help of AHA Behavioral Design, Inc. and in coordination with the Department of Education.   Sun Life Barangay Health Stations   Meanwhile, with the importance of health care coming to light amid the pandemic, Sun Life Foundation, in partnership with Health Futures Foundation, Inc., will also endeavor to provide basic services to the poorer sectors of society through the Sun Life Barangay Health Stations.   A total of eight Sun Life Barangay Health Stations will be constructed throughout Batangas within the year. Each will provide curative services, as well as preventive and promotive initiatives such as immunizations, consultations, follow-ups and health lectures. A community-based health and wellness program will also be established, while local health personnel like barangay health workers and health cluster leaders will be provided relevant training so they can efficiently sustain the barangay health station.   “The Sun Life Foundation’s projects are anchored on our company’s purpose, which is to help Filipinos achieve lifetime financial security and live healthier lives. We earnestly hope that helping fulfill these needs, Rise Brighter PH will empower beneficiaries in their journey towards recovery,” said Sun Life of Canada (Philippines), Inc. and Sun Life Foundation President Alex Narciso. “Moreover, may it give them hope that despite the challenges we’re currently facing, a brighter future is still in the horizon.”

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