MILWILDA M. GUEVARA
Six income tax changes riding on the TRAIN
December 23, 2018
I stopped writing about the TRAIN because it had been the subject of my column frequently. It felt like eating the same food over and over again and I lost my appetite. But, I was intrigued by a message that almost went viral on "8 TRAIN Tax Reforms Items That You Probably Didn't Know." I was quite amused by how taxpayers found many of the reforms irrelevant because they are retired, do not have anything to donate, do not invest in the stock market, and, do not bet on the lotto. I chuckled at why changes in the estate taxes should not bother us "because you should be dead by then." I realized that for most taxpayers, taxes only matter insofar as how they are personally affected. The effects of taxes on income redistribution, growth, stability, and allocation of resources are way beyond their concerns. I would probably be asked "Dude, what are you talking about?"
Read more: https://business.mb.com.ph/2018/01/23/six-income-tax-changes-riding-on-the-train/
PHILIP ARNOLD TUANO, Czar Joseph Castillo, Ramon L Clarete, Marjorie Muyrong and Miann Banaag
Assessment of TRAIN's Coal and Petroleum Excise Taxes: Environmental Benefits and Impacts on Sectoral Employment and Household Welfare
December 15, 2018
The study assesses the impact of the first package of the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (or TRAIN), which includes an increase in petroleum and coal excise taxes, passed by Congress in 2017. The study also reviews the context of the energy sector in the country given that petroleum and coal are the largest sources of energy in the country. Using a computable general equilibrium- microsimulation model, this paper focused on the impact of the increase in petroleum and coal excise taxes and the whole TRAIN 1 package (which includes a reduction in the personal income tax and the broadening of the value added tax). Results from the simulations indicate a slight adverse output effect for most industries under an increase in petroleum and coal taxes scenario. Under the whole TRAIN package, the output effects are slightly positive, especially for the several agriculture and service sectors, resulting in a higher level of carbon emissions. There is a slight rise in employment under the whole package, but poverty incidence increases slightly as excise taxes have an adverse effect in terms of higher commodities prices among the poor.
Read more: https://www.econstor.eu/bitstream/10419/211061/1/1663385947.pdf
70 years of Unicef
If one wanted to bring together all the children who have reached adulthood because UN Children's Fund (Unicef) opened an office in the Philippines on Nov. 20, 1948, it would take more than one large province to accommodate them.
Now celebrating 70 years of service to the Philippines, Unicef continues to work as an energetic partner with government and NGOs, media, academics and the private sector to make a difference for children. Gathering evidence on children's access to their rights of survival, development, protection and participation, Unicef and its Philippine partners stress outcomes and impact. It has come a long way since its 1960s supply and project orientation to today's systems approaches that emphasize evidence and output-based programming.
Read more: https://opinion.inquirer.net/118172/70-years-of-unicef#ixzz6KDCorMvl
RONALD U. MENDOZA AND MIANN S. BANAAG
Is the Philippines' Pro-China Policy Working?
November 14, 2018
To the extent that his words matter and policy has followed suit, President Rodrigo Duterte has tried to engineer a dramatic pivot in the Philippines' foreign policy. Early in his administration, he antagonized traditional economic and political allies like the United States (then under President Barack Obama) and later the European Union (due to its calls to respect human rights in the midst of the Philippine government's campaign against illegal drugs). Duterte also promptly initiated a rapprochement with China, and most recently he even began discussions of possible joint exploration of the resources in the West Philippines Sea (Manila's name for the part of the South China Sea it claims). Duterte claimed all of this is part of an effort to build a more "independent" foreign policy for the country.
There are mixed views on whether and to what extent the country has achieved a truly independent foreign policy, yet one can credit the Duterte administration for its audacity. The Philippines' relationship with China - even given the territorial disputes - could still be a fruitful one, economically. One question, however, is whether this approach has necessarily yielded more economic benefits for the country.
Read more: https://thediplomat.com/2018/11/is-the-philippines-pro-china-policy-working/
Security and Sustainable Development in General Santos City, Philippines A case study for the DCAF Policy and Research Division Project: SSR for Safer Cities -Supporting States to Achieve SDG 11
October 01, 2018
Fostering development remains a major human preoccupation. Numerous conferences have been held and agreements made in an effort to improve the lot of millions of people around the world who are struggling to rise out of poverty, compounded by the destruction of the environment. Strategies have been developed, resources mobilised, institutions built and partnerships forged at an international, regional and local level, all in the name of development. And yet achieving this development remains elusive.
Read more: https://www.academia.edu/38005416/Security_and_Sustainable_Development_in_General_Santos_City_Philip
The Urban Poor 'Kalbaryo'
April 14, 2018
With a sense of glee, a Lady Mayor said yes to federalism in a public forum. She felt short-changed with the current sharing arrangement of revenues. In her mind, she felt that it was totally unfair. Why should her Local Government Unit (LGU) share part of its revenues with the central government? How comforting to believe that under the proposed federal form of government, LGUs can keep all their revenues for themselves!
Read more: https://opinion.inquirer.net/112436/urban-poor-kalbaryo#ixzz6KDD2X7vU
Happy birthday Mr. President
March 30, 2018
Upon seeing me in his birthday celebration, President FVR shouted, "Old Maid"! Surprisingly, I did not feel embarrassed. I knew it was his fond way of teasing me. For so many years, he unselfishly served our country as a soldier, a President, and a statesman. On his 90th year, he has every right to be playful.
Read more: https://business.mb.com.ph/2018/03/20/happy-birthday-mr-president/?__cf_chl_jschl_tk__=d2b85033f749b
Receive rather than give
March 27, 2018
Read more: https://business.mb.com.ph/2018/03/27/receive-rather-than-give/?__cf_chl_jschl_tk__=a1ce630fa9764e68
Why Juan cannot read
March 13, 2018
My grandnephew Matthew is a source of pride and wonder to me. His essays are elegantly written and show a grasp of the English language that is extraordinary. I will always be unable to write as brilliantly as he does because he is truly exceptional. And if just to keep me in constant awe, he has been awarded a scholarship by a renowned university abroad. He works very hard in his studies which he beautifully described in one of his written works, "A Workaholic's Guide to Burnout."
Read more: https://business.mb.com.ph/2018/03/13/matthew-and-motmot/?__cf_chl_jschl_tk__=128cf09a33ade49f6cb266
February 27, 2018
While many of us were sleeping, our Congressmen have been diligently working on how to change our Constitution and adopt a Federal form of government. I forced myself to read the draft that Sub-Committee 1 of the Committee on Constitutional Amendments of the Lower House has submitted, lest ordinary citizens like me, lose by indifference and attrition. It gave me a big scare that the proposals are ambiguous, amorphous and vague.
Read more: https://business.mb.com.ph/2018/02/27/why/