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Thousands flock CdO Labor Day jobs fair

May 2, 2019

THOUSANDS of job seekers from Northern Mindanao joined this year’s Labor Day Mega Job Fair held at the Atrium of Limketkai Center, in Cagayan de Oro City.     Rachel Ann Fuentes was one of the applicants hoping to land a job on labor day. To increase her chances of getting hired, Fuentes submitted her applications and requirements to three different companies.     Lawyer Joffrey Suyao, Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) regional director, said around 5,000 local and 11,000 overseas jobs from 132 participating companies were opened to job seekers on labor day.     Government agencies, particularly the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA), Philippine National Police (PNP), Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), Philippine Army (PA), and Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), also opened around 12,000 vacancies.      Security guards, factory workers, call center officers, and customer service specialists were among the top local vacancies available.     Kisscel Joy Dumandan was happy when she was hired-on-the-spot as call center agent of Abyss Virtual Assistant Services. “Pasalamat nalang pud ko nga na hired dayon ko kay kailangan nako ang trabaho (I’m very thankful that I’m hired immediately because I need a job),” she said. Director Suyao     Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE)-X Director Joffrey Suyao says more than 28,000 job vacancies from 132 participating companies are up for grabs during the 117thLabor Day celebration in Cagayan de Oro. (PIA/Cagayan de Oro)     Alquezon Ano-os, a resident of Maigo, Lanao del Norte, was also hired-on-the-spot as a salesman in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. He said he applied for work abroad due to his previous experience as an overseas worker.       As of twelve noon on Labor Day, DOLE Region X reported that 2,250 applicants have registered and 20 of them were hired-on-the-spot.     A one-stop shop was also set-up at the Atrium of Limketkai Center to help applicants in their pre-employment requirements.     Aside from the mega job fair, the 117th labor celebration in Cagayan de Oro was also highlighted by the livelihood and business fair organized by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) as well as free Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) enrollment and skills demonstration spearheaded by the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (Tesda).     DTI Region 10 Director Linda Boniao said the livelihood and business fair will not only promote local products and businesses but also multiply the workforce by bringing employment opportunities in the informal sector through entrepreneurship.     Tesda Region 10 Director Tarhata Mapandi, on the other hand, said Tesda offered 1,800 scholarship slots worth Php14 million through the 52 participating TVET providers in the region.

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AboitizPower Q1 net income dips by 9% to P3.6 billion

May 2, 2019

AboitizPower recorded a consolidated net income of P3.6 billion for the first quarter of 2019, 9% lower than the P4 billion recorded for the same period last year.     Non-recurring losses amounting to P440 million were recognized during the period, compared to the P1.2 billion in non-recurring losses recorded during the same period last year. Without these one-off losses, core net income for the first quarter of 2019 was P4.1 billion, 21% lower year-on-year (YoY), which was largely due to the higher volume and cost of purchased power.     Spot market prices were exceptionally high during the first three months of 2019, and the company purchased replacement power due to outages and over-contracting in preparation for Therma Visayas, Inc. (TVI) coming online. The company recorded consolidated earnings before interest, tax, depreciation, and amortization (EBITDA) of P10.4 billion for the period, 13% lower than the P11.9 billion for the first quarter of 2018.     “It has been a challenging first quarter for the industry and AboitizPower. The planned maintenance shutdown of power plants in preparation for the upcoming elections, coupled with forced outages, resulted in the grid's thinning reserves. Despite this, our customers remain our top priority and we ensured delivery of replacement power from the spot market,” said Emmanuel V. Rubio, AboitizPower Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer. Generation and Retail Electricity Supply     AboitizPower’s generation and retail supply business recorded a consolidated EBITDA of P8.6 billion in the first quarter of 2019, 15% lower than the P10.1 billion recorded during the same period last year. This was primarily due to higher volume and cost of purchased power. As previously mentioned, spot market prices were high during the first quarter of 2018, and the company purchased replacement power caused by outages and over-contracting in preparation for TVI’s incoming capacity addition.     Capacity sold for the first quarter decreased by 7% YoY, from 3,174 megawatts (MW) in 2018 to 2,947 MW in 2019.     “We are excited with new supply contracts and new power plants that have started to deliver power to the grid, which should contribute to our bottom line starting this year,” Rubio said.     “We will continue to pursue our renewable energy projects as we look forward to the implementation of the Green Energy Option Program and Renewable Portfolio Standards. We are committed to continue providing the country with adequate power supply that is affordable and sustainable,” Rubio added. Distribution     AboitizPower’s distribution business, meanwhile, recorded consolidated EBITDA of P1.9 billion, 3% higher than the P1.8 billion recorded last year.  The company saw energy sales increase to 1,343 gigawatt-hours (GWh), which was 3% higher than the 1,298 GWh recorded in the first quarter of 2018.  This was driven by the increase in new customers across all segments.  About AboitizPower     AboitizPower is the holding company for the Aboitiz Group’s investments in power generation, distribution, and retail electricity services. It advances business and communities by providing reliable and ample power supply at a reasonable and competitive price, and with the least adverse effects on the environment and host communities.     The company is one of the largest power producers in the Philippines with a balanced portfolio of assets located across the country. It is a major producer of Cleanergy, its brand for clean and renewable energy with several hydroelectric, geothermal and solar power generation facilities. It also has thermal power plants in its generation portfolio to support the baseload and peak energy demands of the country.     The company also owns distribution utilities that operate in high-growth areas in Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao, including the second and third largest private utilities in the country.

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Filinvest assist local students overcome reading difficulties

May 2, 2019

FILINVEST’S FDC Misamis Power Corporation (FDC Misamis), owner and operator of the biggest baseload plant in Mindanao, has partnered with Mohon Elementary School (MES) in Tagoloan town, Misamis Oriental to improve the reading proficiency of local students.      The collaboration was made possible through MES’ Active Stakeholders Participation in Reading Engagement (ASPIRE) Program.      ASPIRE, which was conceptualized by the MES’ General Parents-Teachers Association (GPTA) and is in partnership with the Barangay Council of Mohon, is a tutorial program intended for poor reader and non-reader students of MES.      Launched last year, the program aims to improve the literacy rate of MES students through the active participation of teachers, parents and other community stakeholders within the area such as private entities like FDC Misamis. The management of FDC Misamis welcomed the opportunity and allowed employees to tutor students based on their available schedules.      FDC Misamis is the pioneering private institution who welcomes this partnership according to school principal, Dr. Carnila Simacon.      This, as FDC Misamis wants to contribute something positive to the Department of Education’s (DepEd) flagship initiative dubbed as “Every Child A Reader Program.” For its initial participation, FDC Misamis employee-volunteers took under their wings five poor-reader six grader pupils earlier last month.      The beneficiaries are graduating students who are under conditional status and must improve their reading skills in the next two months for them to move up to seventh grade. “It’s sad to note that our five beneficiaries have great difficulty knowing the (basic) sounding of the letters in our alphabet,” shared Analiza Miso, FDC Misamis’ Community Relations Specialist, who’s acting as one of the tutors.      “But the kids are showing enthusiasm learning how to identify letters, its sounding, and of course, the proper pronunciation, through our help and encouragement,” Miso added. Five weeks into the program, the students are showing a lot of improvements in their reading skills. One volunteer, Kim Orquillas, FDC Misamis’ Assistant Community Relations Specialist, narrates the changes he observed from the students. “I am very happy and most of all, there is a feeling of fulfillment that after four consecutive Mondays of teaching the kids, I realized that the time and effort I spent with them were never wasted, because I can see that they can now identify letters, phonics and words they have difficulty reading before,” said Orquillas.     MES and other community partners are happy for the developments of the students. They are hopeful that the program will yield positive results in eliminating illiteracy in the community. “What a great help! We’re blessed. And we’re thankful, indeed that FDC Misamis is here to help us teach our non-readers,” said Simacon. Simple but very helpful, was how Francis Jerson Sabio, punong barangay of Mohon in Tagoloan tagged the program.     “Hoping then that FDC Misamis is one among those who can help cure an ‘appalling’ joke that Philippines is a nation of poor-readers,” said Sabio.      FDC Misamis then disclosed plans to continue the tutorial program in the coming years and will be under its Corporate Social Responsibility’s (CSR) “Education for Empowerment” pillar. The program will be replicated to other public elementary schools situated in Tagoloan and Villanueva and will accommodate non-readers and poor-readers from grades one to six.

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Economist cites factors for PH’s ratings upgrade

May 2, 2019

THE upgrade of the Philippines’ investment grade credit rating to ‘BBB+’ with Stable outlook may be an indication that investments will be a regular major growth driver of the economy.     This was pointed out by ING Bank Manila senior economist Nicholas Mapa after S&P upgraded its ratings for the domestic economy on Tuesday due to continued robust expansion, healthy external position and sustainable public finances.     “The string of six percent plus growth was likely considered as the Philippines enjoys a demographic dividend but also looks to evolve into a new investment driven growth narrative,” Mapa said in a research note.     “Government officials must look to safeguard this growth momentum going forward,” he said.     In the last quarter of 2018, growth, as measured by gross domestic product (GDP), expanded by 6.3 percent, driven by construction, trade and repair of motor vehicles, motorcycles, personal and household goods; and other services. For the whole of 2018, the GDP grew by 6.2 percent.     Among the major economic sectors, Industry registered the fastest growth at 6.9 percent and was followed by Services, 6.3 percent, and Agriculture, 1.7 percent.     The government is committed to increase investments in infrastructure to sustain, and even increase the current rate of economic growth and to entice more investors.     Mapa said that aside from strong growth of investments, the ratings upgrade may also be due to S&P’s readings on the country’s external position, which he said is “as favorable with its more than adequate level of gross international reserves and the proverbial ‘aces up our sleeves’ in (overseas Filipino) remittances and BPO (Business Process Outsourcing) receipts.”     He said remittances and BPO receipts have been the primary sources of the country’s foreign currency reserves.     “The upgrade limits the reliance on interest rate differentials to bolster the Philippine peso as foreign flows are seen to continue even with less attractive carry trade opportunities,” he added. (PNA)

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NorthMin sustains economic momentum

May 1, 2019

NORTHERN Mindanao has maintained its status as one of the fastest-growing regions in the country with a growth of 7.0 percent last year, according to the Philippine Statistics Authority-10 (PSA-10).     A PSA-10 report released over the weekend also showed a significant drop in poverty in the region in 2017.     PSA-10 described the region’s economy as “robust” and that it has surpassed the country’s 6.2 percent Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth.     This acceleration, the PSA-10 said, was faster than the recorded economic growth of 5.8 percent in 2017, and was driven by the industry and services sectors.     PSA-10 officer-in-charge Janeth Aves said the region’s economic performance “is also higher than the national average growth of 6.2 percent GDP.”     The services sector maintains the highest share with 44.1 percent, which grew by 8.9 percent, followed by industry with 35.6 percent growing by 8.8 percent, and agriculture with 20.3 percent.     The top contributors to the growth in services were trade and repair of motor vehicles, motorcycles, personal and household goods, transportation, storage, and communication.     National Economic Development Authority-10 (NEDA-10) Director Mylah Faye Aurora Cariño said in a media briefing Friday that the region still has an ample room to grow, with election-related spending and investments as possible growth drivers.     She said the region’s growth is well within the agency’s target of 5.5 to 7.1 percent and seen as the highest since 2006. (PNA)

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Over 10,000 jobs up for grab on Labor’s Day

May 1, 2019

MORE than 10,000 job opportunities are up for grabs in the 2019 Labor Day Jobs and Business Fair, May 1.     Lawyer Joffrey Suyao, regional director of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) in Northern Mindanao, said they are expecting about 100 employers and a minimum of 10,000 job vacancies for both local and overseas employment.     As of April 16, around 60 employers have confirmed to join the job fair at Limketkai Mall Atrium. From such, 37 are private companies for local employment and 21 are Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) licensed overseas recruitment agencies.     Around 1,554 job opportunities from the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) and the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) are also available.     Pre-registration has started April 1 and will run until April 26 at the Public Employment Service Office of Cagayan de Oro City Hall.     Director Suyao advised job seekers to be in their business attire and to bring their resume, application, and other important documents during the job fair.

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