I Love Israel: Israel’s OurCrowd and Philippine investment firm establish partnership

If you are looking for breakthroughs within Israel-Philippine ties related to business or economics, be delighted over the news that an Israeli firm partnered with a local firm that will create opportunities for growth with regards to investing, according to a Manila Standard news report.

To put things in perspective, posted below is an excerpt from the Manila Standard report. Some parts in boldface…

OurCrowd, Israel’s most active venture platform, and Einhorn Resources Inc, a Philippine investment firm, today announced a partnership that will provide Einhorn clients direct access to OurCrowd’s exclusive investments and mentorships to facilitate growth of Philippine startups.

The partnership was signed in Tel Aviv, Israel, between Dan Bennett, OurCrowd’s General Partner & Managing Director of Australia and Asia, and Jean Henri Lhuillier, Einhorn Resources Inc. CEO.

This new partnership is an exciting opportunity to extend our pipeline into the vibrant investment community in the Philippines and to help nurture its startup ecosystem,” said Dan Bennett. “Einhorn Resources’ deep knowledge of the Philippine investment landscape will be instrumental to bringing our top-tier technology talent to that part of the world.

“Not only are we raising money for these opportunities both in Israel, the US and beyond, but this is an important opportunity for corporates and family offices to invest from the Philippines and to attract technology that will benefit their core business.” 

This collaboration, the first of its kind in the Philippines, provides Einhorn clients direct access to one of the world’s leading online venture platforms. OurWorld currently has $1.9 billion in commitments and has deployed capital to more than 347 portfolio companies and 39 funds in five continents. It also has 200,000 registered members from 195 countries which it allows to participate in vetted and early-stage firms and funds.

Currently, plans are being made to set up a regional incubator that will give growth opportunities to Philippine startups looking for Israeli tech expertise.

We are excited to work with OurCrowd to pave the way for stronger ties for investment opportunities, traditional companies and tech solution collaborations,” said Jean Henri Lhuillier. “The partnership aims to open the funnel to a Philippine network of investors who can choose relevant companies to invest in as well as customize an online portfolio.”

Indeed, the OurCrowd-Einhorn partnership is a very welcome development and its impact will be felt in the years to come. Both the Philippines and Israel endured hardships related to the COVID-19 crisis over the past few years but there are efforts to not only recover economically and socially, but also emerge stronger from the pandemic. The economy of the Philippines is growing but more opportunities related to investing are needed and this is where the OurCrowd-Einhorn partnership comes in. To the local entrepreneurs reading this, please pay close attention to the above excerpt and start considering looking to Israel for opportunities and innovations in business. This partnership is truly a blessing from the Lord for both Israel and the Philippines! 

If you truly believe in Lord Jesus, the Holy Spirit and God the Heavenly Father wholeheartedly and you continue to be faithful (not religious), you should be aware that Christians are meant to stand united with Israel, love the Jewish people and pray for the peace of Jerusalem. You can do your part supporting Israel by donating to Christians United for Israel (CUFI). Do not forget to read the Holy Bible, then pray in tongues to the Lord in the privacy of your room with the door shut.

Always be the fearless and aggressive church of Lord Jesus! Always stand in support of Israel and pray for President Marcos and all the other government officials who recently took office. Pray also for Israel constantly.

In ending this I Love Israel piece, posted below are Israel-related videos for your viewing pleasure and enlightenment.

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. If you want to support my website, please consider making a donation. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram athttps://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco/.

Panda Express Muntinlupa City branch set for July 1, 2022 opening

If you are fond of American Chinese meals with the fast food touch, then you might be interested to know that Panda Express is about to open its Muntinlupa City branch at one of the gasoline stations along the southbound lane of the South Luzon Expressway (SLEX) on July 1, 2022, according to a report by Malaya.

To put things in perspective, posted below is the excerpt from the Malaya news report. Some parts in boldface…

The south area of the metro is attracting some good fortune. Panda Express—the world’s largest American Chinese dining concept—is set to open another store in the south on July 1, with its Shell SLT branch, the first location in Muntinlupa and along the South Luzon expressway.

The new branch will be the 10th Panda Express branch in Metro Manila since it set foot in the country in 2019.

“This back-to-back store openings in the south is all attributable to the heartwarming support that Panda Express has received from Filipino customers since 2019. Guests from Muntinlupa and nearby areas, as well as city travelers heading south can now stop over at our new location to satisfy their craving for savory, wok-cooked American Chinese dishes,” said Ned Bandojo, Business Development Head of Jollibee Group Foreign Franchised Brands.

The Panda Express menu includes a variety of entrées with regional Chinese influences—from its bestselling The Original Orange Chicken, a wok-tossed crispy chicken coated in sweet tangy sauce to other must-try entrees like Broccoli Beef, Savory Shrimp and Black Pepper Steak.

For the newcomers reading this, Panda Express started in Glendale, California in the United States in 1983 and expanded worldwide with over two thousand branches. In the South Metro Manila area, they have branches in Parañaque City and Las Piñas City.

Let me end this piece by asking you readers: If you are a Muntinlupa City resident, what is your reaction to this recent development? Are you willing to take the trip south the SLEX just to eat at the Shell gas station branch of Panda Express? When was the last time you ate at an American Chinese restaurant? Do you wish that Panda Express would someday open a new branch within the Alabang area of Muntinlupa?

You may answer in the comments below. If you prefer to answer privately, you may do so by sending me a direct message online.

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco/

For more South Metro Manila community news and developments, come back here soon. Also say NO to fake news, NO to irresponsible journalism, NO to misinformation, NO to plagiarists, NO to reckless publishers and NO to sinister propaganda when it comes to news and developments. For South Metro Manila community developments, member engagements, commerce and other relevant updates, join the growing South Metro Manila Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/342183059992673

Muntinlupa City extends Business Permit Renewal anew to March 31, 2022 without penalties

The City Government of Muntinlupa has announced another extension on the business permit renewal period up to March 31, 2022.

Muntinlupa Business Permits and Licensing Office has posted on its Facebook page regarding the extension of the assessment and payment of Business Permit Renewal.

“Per City Ordinance No. 2022-318, the deadline for both the assessment and payment of Business Permit Renewal is extended up to March 31, 2022. Renew your business permits now to avoid penalties,” BPLO noted.

Meanwhile, all transactions are now back at City Hall. Previously, taxpayers proceed to Muntinlupa Business Permit Renewal Hub located at Muntinlupa Sports Center, Brgy. Tunasan.

The extension has been approved by the City Council and Mayor Jaime Fresnedi following the request of BPLO. The licensing office noted the economic impact of COVID-19 pandemic to the taxpayers.

BPLO added that the initiative aims to help taxpayers who “may not be able to immediately comply with the mandatory documents which are the basis for the prudent and correct imposable taxes” due to the pandemic.

The extension covers payment of all local taxes, fees and other charges without penalty.

Further, business owners may renew their business permit online via the Business E-payment System (BESt) which can be accessed thru Muntinlupa City official website (www.muntinlupacity.gov.ph).

Muntinlupa BEST is an online platform which allows locators to accomplish business permit applications and transactions through any internet-enabled device. Taxpayers can accomplish transactions including application for New Business Permit, Renewal of Business Permit, Application Status Inquiry, Billing and Payment, and Payment History.

Another option for business locators is the Business Permit Application Self-Service (BPASS) kiosks which are located across the city’s major malls.

Business permits may also be delivered by the city government’s official courier service partner, Keridelivery Inc, to the doorstep of business owners.

Mayor Fresnedi thanked the taxpayers for their continued support in doing their part for the recovery of the city and the local economy.

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The above information was sourced from an official press release. Some parts were changed for this website.

Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  HavenorFantasy@twitter.com as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/

For more South Metro Manila community news and developments, come back here soon. Also say NO to fake news, NO to irresponsible journalism, NO to misinformation, NO to plagiarists, NO to reckless publishers and NO to sinister propaganda when it comes to news and developments. For South Metro Manila community developments, member engagements, commerce and other relevant updates, join the growing South Metro Manila Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/342183059992673

COVID-19 Crisis: Unvaccinated people are still restricted in Parañaque City under Alert Level 2

People who remain unvaccinated are still restricted in Parañaque City, according to the news report by the Manila Bulletin. It seems that the recent shift of control of Metro Manila into Alert Level 2 does not matter to the said city.

To put things in perspective, posted below is an excerpt from the report of the Manila Bulletin. Some parts in boldface…

The Paranaque City government will continue to restrict the movement of unvaccinated individuals despite the de-escalation of Metro Manila to Alert Level 2 quarantine status, Mayor Edwin Olivarez said on Wednesday, Feb. 2.

The mayor said unvaccinated individuals must always stay at home unless there is a need to buy essential goods and in need of medical services.

Olivarez said residents ages 18 years old and above are allowed to go out of their residences while the 17-year olds and below are only permitted outside if they are accompanied by fully vaccinated relatives.

(He) said for transportation, the city government allows tricycles to carry three passengers while buses and jeepneys are allowed to operate at 70% capacity.

The mayor said for businesses, the city government advised the establishments to apply for a safety seal so they can be allowed 10% additional operational and venue capacity.

As far as Manila Bulletin’s reporting above goes, things look really blunt in Parañaque City which itself is one of four cities in the National Capital Region (NCR) that have no automatic lifting of restrictions against unvaccinated in relation to the shift to Alert Level 2. This was confirmed by Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) chairperson Benhur Abalos himself in a separate news report. Legally speaking, Parañaque’s restrictions on unvaccinated people (for references, click here and here) remain because the approved city ordinance allegedly has no automatic lifting clause (refer to the same GMA news report with Abalos involved).

To put things in perspective, posted below is the excerpt from the GMA Network news report. Some parts in boldface…

In a press conference, Abalos said the ordinances of Parañaque, Pasay, Quezon City, and Pateros have no automatic lifting clause for the restrictions against unvaccinated people.

Four LGUs don’t have automatic lifting clause but three LGUs will be issuing a new executive order. These are Parañaque, Pasay, and Quezon City,” he said.

“Only Pateros will be left as they will still discuss the issue tomorrow,” he added.

The Metro Manila Council (MMC), composed of the 17 mayors in the region, earlier agreed to restrict the mobility of unvaccinated people in the NCR under the Alert Level 3. These LGUs issued their respective ordinances on the matter.

Let me end this piece by asking you readers: If you are a resident of Parañaque City and you are unvaccinated, do you feel betrayed by your current City Government? Are the local restrictions on unvaccinated persons and businesses affecting you personally and professionally? Do the current restrictions make you think twice about voting in the next local elections? Do you feel like reaching out to anti-vaccine fanatics and SJWs (social justice warriors) from around the country and overseas to come to Parañaque and organize massive protest rallies to compel the City Government to act?

You may answer in the comments below. If you prefer to answer privately, you may do so by sending me a direct message online.

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/

For more South Metro Manila community news and developments, come back here soon. Also say NO to fake news, NO to irresponsible journalism, NO to misinformation, NO to plagiarists, NO to reckless publishers and NO to sinister propaganda when it comes to news and developments. For South Metro Manila community developments, member engagements, commerce and other relevant updates, join the growing South Metro Manila Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/342183059992673

COVID-19 Crisis: Muntinlupa City Government grants zero-interest loan to 200 “Muntipreneurs” to help them recover amid pandemic

The City Government of Muntinlupa continues to provide zero-interest loan assistance to micro-entrepreneurs and MSMEs dubbed as “Muntipreneurs” in a bid to revive the stalled local economy due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mayor Jaime Fresnedi led a ceremonial turn-over ceremony of the loan assistance amounting to P4,374,000.00 for 200 beneficiaries of Tulong Negosyo’s Batch 132, 133,134, & 135 in Muntinlupa City Hall last January 27.

Muntinlupa Mayor Jaime Fresnedi leads a ceremonial turn-over ceremony of zero-interest loan assistance amounting to P4,374,000.00 for 200 “Muntipreneurs” (Muntinlupa entrepreneurs) last January 27. The local government of Muntinlupa continues to provide zero-interest loan assistance to micro-entrepreneurs and MSMEs in a bid to revive the stalled local economy due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Muntinlupa is the first LGU to introduce the micro-financing program. (source – Muntinlupa PIO)

Of the total, four local entrepreneurs received P150,000 each, seven (7) received P100,000, and five (5) beneficiaries received P75,000. The local exec vows to continue the local financing program and hopes to revive the local economy by supporting grassroot players through various programs.

The City Government of Muntinlupa assists local micro-entrepreneurs through the Joint Resource Financing Program’s (JRFP) Tulong Negosyo (formerly Dagdag Puhunan). Muntinlupa is the first LGU to introduce the micro-financing program.

Tulong Negosyo caters to MSMEs and provides micro-finance assistance ranging from P2,000 up to P150,000 depending on the business capital ceiling and payment record of beneficiaries. The program aims to provide additional capital for business expansion for aspiring and established business owners in Muntinlupa.

Tulong Negosyo program has three categories namely: Simulang Kapital (SIKAP) Pangkabuhayan with loan application amounting to P2,000 – P5,000, Asenso Loan Program amounting to P6,000 – P75,000, and Maunlad Loan Program amounting to P75,000 – P150,000.

Further, a Savings Program has been incorporated in the loan assistance to teach clients about the importance of economizing and serve as protection to the clients and the program. Entrepreneurial education through trainings and other related interventions are also conducted.

Recently, JRFP has launched a Restructuring Program extending payment schedules for beneficiaries in a bid to help them recover from losses due to the pandemic.

Due to the limitations in face-to-face transactions, the Tulong Negosyo has also implemented Online Application services and cashless repayment system through Smart Padala and G-Cash.

To apply, visit Joint Resources Financing Program – JRF Facebook Page or click the following links: New Applications – bit.ly/TulongNegosyoNew, and Renewal – bit.ly/TulongNegosyoRenewal. The Muntinlupa Joint Resources Financing Program is located at 2F Plaza Central, Brgy. Poblacion with contact number 8772-3457.

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The above information was sourced from an official press release. Some parts were changed for this website.

Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  HavenorFantasy@twitter.com as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/

For more South Metro Manila community news and developments, come back here soon. Also say NO to fake news, NO to irresponsible journalism, NO to misinformation, NO to plagiarists, NO to reckless publishers and NO to sinister propaganda when it comes to news and developments. For South Metro Manila community developments, member engagements, commerce and other relevant updates, join the growing South Metro Manila Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/342183059992673

COVID-19 Crisis: Unvaccinated people in France banned from public venues due to new law

Over there in France – which I personally toured a very long time ago – a new law was approved by Parliament that severely affects people who still have not been vaccinated for COVID-19, according to a news report by CBN News. This means that the unvaccinated there in France are barred from all restaurants, sports arenas, and other venues. If you wish to see comparisons with what happened here in the Philippines, click herehereherehere, and here.

To put things in perspective, posted below is an excerpt from the CBN News report. Some parts in boldface…

France’s parliament passed a law Sunday to discriminate against unvaccinated people, barring them from all restaurants, sports arenas, and other venues

The new measure applies to every French citizen 16 years of age and older. It requires proof of full vaccination for access to these venues, including tourist sites, trains, and airline flights. The new law also establishes tougher fines for fake vaccination passes and allows authorities to check IDs to avoid fraud

There are reports that France’s escalating campaign against unvaccinated people could eliminate the world’s number one tennis player from the upcoming French Open in May. The reigning champion Novak Djokovic was just deported from Australia and will miss the Australian Open as a result, and now France could be next.  

The Macron government says it’s trying to protect the country’s hospitals during a record number of infections caused by the highly contagious COVID-19 Omicron variant. It comes even though health officials around the world admit that vaccinated and unvaccinated people are all susceptible to Omicron.

France’s National Assembly approved the law in a 215-58 vote. President Emmanuel Macron had hoped to get the bill pushed through sooner, but it was slightly delayed by resistance from lawmakers both on the right and left, along with hundreds of proposed amendments.

Protesters across Europe have spoken out recently against the harsh measures being taken to limit the freedom of unvaccinated citizens. French media report some demonstrators in France and Italy have even started wearing yellow Stars of David to say they feel like they’re being singled out in the way the Nazis first shamed the Jews during World War II

One protestor in Italy said, “We are creating a great inequality between citizens. We will have first-class citizens, who can access public services, the theater, social life, and second-class citizens, who cannot.”

More than 91% of French adults are already fully vaccinated, and some critics have wondered if the “vaccine pass” will make much of a difference since that high level of vaccination hasn’t stopped the Omicron wave from striking France. 

As CBN News reported last week, scientists are seeing signals that COVID-19′s alarming Omicron wave may have peaked in Britain. France’s health minister Dr. Olivier Véran, who has tested positive for COVID, said French authorities were keeping a close eye on data from Britain to ascertain whether France was nearing its own peak, according to The New York Times

The French government is hoping the new pass will be effective in reducing the number of new cases that are filling up strained medical centers across the country without having to employ new lockdown restrictions. A new lockdown would be another blow to France’s economy, which is the world’s fifth-largest economy. 

It could also affect Macron’s chances for reelection in the April 10 presidential election. But Macron has embraced the targeting of what he calls “irresponsible” unvaccinated individuals. He said, “Someone irresponsible is not a citizen,” saying their rights should be revoked because he no longer considers them to be citizens of France. 

Up until now, a COVID-19 pass has been required in France to go to restaurants, movie theaters, museums, and many sites throughout the country, but unvaccinated people have been allowed in if they show a recent negative test or proof of recent recovery. Some exceptions may be made for those who have recently recovered from COVID-19.  

More than 76% of French ICU beds are occupied by virus patients, most of them unvaccinated, and some 200 people with the virus are dying every day, according to the AP. 

Let me end this piece by asking you readers: If you remained unvaccinated for COVID-19 until now, how are you living with the imposed limitations in your local community? Do you think that the French Parliament did enough research before passing the reported law? How do you feel about the new law of France and the current state of the unvaccinated people over there? If you are a non-resident of France, does this newest development discourage you from visiting the said country?

You may answer in the comments below. If you prefer to answer privately, you may do so by sending me a direct message online.

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/

Muntinlupa City extends Biz Permit Renewal to February 15, 2022 without penalties

The City Government of Muntinlupa officially extended the business permit renewal period from January 20 to February 15, 2022.

Mayor Jaime Fresnedi has approved City Ordinance No. 2022-311 extending the filing and renewal of Business and Tricycle Permits up to the closing hours of February 15. The extension also covers payment of all local taxes, fees and other charges without penalty.

The Business Permit and Licensing Office (BPLO) requested for the extension of time of filing and renewal of permits noting the economic impact of COVID-19 pandemic to the taxpayers.

Previously, the Business Permit Renewal was scheduled from January 3-20.

Taxpayers may proceed to Muntinlupa Business Permit Renewal Hub located at Muntinlupa Sports Center, Brgy. Tunasan or opt to process their application online and via off-site channels

Strict health standards and distancing protocols are implemented in the Renewal Hub which include sterilization and disinfection of submitted documents using UV box, body temperature check, installation of alcohol sprays, and monitoring by compliance officers.

A One-Stop Shop arrangement in the Business Permit Renewal Hub has been installed in the venue for the convenience of taxpayers.

Business taxpayers can pay using Debit Cards in the Renewal Hub. Mobile ATMs and a Closed Circuit Television System are also installed across the venue. Free shuttle service is provided for clients going to and from the venue with pick-up points located at Muntinlupa City Hall Quadrangle.

Further, business owners may renew their business permit online via the Business E-payment System (BESt) which can be accessed thru Muntinlupa City official website (www.muntinlupacity.gov.ph).

Muntinlupa BEST is an online platform which allows locators to accomplish business permit applications and transactions through any internet-enabled device. Taxpayers can accomplish transactions including application for New Business Permit, Renewal of Business Permit, Application Status Inquiry, Billing and Payment, and Payment History.

Another option for business locators is an off-site channel via the Business Permit Application Self-Service (BPASS) kiosks located inside the city’s major malls.

Business permits may also be delivered by the City Government’s official courier service partner, Keridelivery Inc, to the doorstep of business owners.

Mayor Fresnedi extends his thanks to the business tax payers in doing their part for the recovery of the city and the local economy.

The list of requirements is posted in the city’s website www.muntinlupacity.gov.ph.

For inquiries, you may call BPLO Muntinlupa at 8317-9964 or email them at bplo.muntinlupa@yahoo.com.

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The above information was sourced from an official press release. Some parts were changed for this website.

Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  HavenorFantasy@twitter.com as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/

For more South Metro Manila community news and developments, come back here soon. Also say NO to fake news, NO to irresponsible journalism, NO to misinformation, NO to plagiarists, NO to reckless publishers and NO to sinister propaganda when it comes to news and developments. For South Metro Manila community developments, member engagements, commerce and other relevant updates, join the growing South Metro Manila Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/342183059992673

COVID-19 Crisis: Private sector stakeholders urge government to allow them to use purchased vaccines as booster shots for fully vaccinated employees plus household members

According to a recent report by the Philippine News Agency (PNA), more than twenty-five private sector stakeholders urged the government to let them use purchased vaccines as booster shots for their employees who have been fully vaccinated as well as for the household members. Take note that the current growing economic recovery (related to the low daily count of new COVID-19 infections) could be derailed if the huge COVID-19 vaccine supply of the nation does not fully get used before expiration.

To put things in perspective, posted below is an excerpt from the PNA report. Some parts in boldface…

Some 26 groups from the private sector are appealing to the government to allow them to use the vaccines they purchased to be given as booster shots for their employees and household members.

In a joint statement Tuesday, the private sector said “vaccines are arriving faster than they can be dispensed” and the private sector cannot take the risk of having their purchased vaccines expire and go to waste.

The private sector has been active in buying coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) vaccines since last year to help the government in its vaccination efforts.

“We fully understand the need to prioritize certain sectors when vaccines are scarce, but the government has announced that its stockpile of vaccines has now reached close to 60 million and continues to increase as the vaccines are arriving faster than they can be dispensed,” the groups said.

They said the country no longer has a vaccine shortage and now has a large inventory, thus the vaccines that they have purchased could now be used as booster shots for their employees and dependents.

The private groups have also recognized that the high vaccination rate in Metro Manila and nearby provinces, and the increasing inoculation rate across the country has resulted in a dramatic decline in cases after the surge due to threats of Delta variant last August.

The boost in vaccination drive has also allowed the safe reopening of the economy.

“But studies show that Covid vaccine efficacy wanes beyond six months and without boosters, we increase the risk of another surge which could again shut down the economy,” the groups added.

The above report ended stating that the government has allowed booster shots mainly for priority groups A1 to A3, specifically the health workers, the senior citizens and the comorbid patients.

Let me end this piece by asking you readers: What can you say about this new development? Were you vaccinated by your employer who purchased vaccines in coordination with the national government? Do you think the national authorities will consider the message of the 26 private sector groups? Do you believe that the national authorities are capable on managing COVID-19 vaccines with regards to receiving them and distributing them while monitoring their expiration dates?

You may answer in the comments below. If you prefer to answer privately, you may do so by sending me a direct message online.

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/

Better than Streaming: SM Cinema is reopening nationwide!

Welcome back, fellow geeks and movie buffs! If you are present here in the Philippines and you really crave for watching movies inside the cinema, then you will be happy to know that major cinema operator SM Cinema is gradually reopening its cinemas around the nation complete with safety measures related to COVID-19 (note: SM Cinema has been certified by the Safety Seal program) and the stuff that people enjoy watching inside an SM-operated movie theater.

To put things in perspective, posted below is an excerpt from SMSupermalls.com. Some parts in boldface…

A premium cinema with leather seats. (photo source – SM Cinema)

First to reopen is SM Cinema Aura Premier on November 17, Wednesday. The newly redeveloped theaters at SM Cinema North EDSAMall of Asia and Megamall will be reopening on November 24, while SM Cinema Grand Central, the newest SM Cinema branch, will be on November 26. SM Cinema FairviewSouthmall, Manila, BF Parañaque, Clark, San Lazaro, Baguio, Dasmariñas, Sta. Rosa, Sucat, Sta Mesa, and Bicutan will reopen to the public on November 30.

As one of the first establishments to acquire a Safety Seal, SM remains committed to the safety and wellbeing of their mallgoers. SM Cinema, in partnership with Hygiea Innovations and Technology, Inc, have installed MERV filters and air purifiers to ensure safe and clean cinema for everyone. A health and safety officer will be present for every screening while movie theaters will be thoroughly cleaned and sanitized regularly. SM Cinema employees are fully vaccinated and will be at your service in full PPE gear.

Before you head off to the cinemas with the entire family in tow, take note of these important reminders:

  • Safety protocols will be strictly implemented within the cinemas.
  • Moviegoers, from adults to kids, must be fully vaccinated to be allowed inside the cinemas.
  • They must also wear well-fitted face masks at all times and face shields are non-mandatory and voluntary. A health declaration must be presented upon ticket purchase.
  • Temperature and symptoms will be checked upon mall entry

SM Cinema is making every step of the theatergoing experience as contactless as possible to give customers what they’re ultimately looking for these days – a safe and clean environment. Reopened SM Cinemas will have capacity restrictions to allow customers to social distance one seat apart from each other. Bringing of food inside will be prohibited for now, although drinking water will be allowed in consideration of possible emergencies and health risks. Audiences will be asked to remain in their seats during the duration of the movie, and cashless payment options will be available via GrabPay, GCash, or credit or debit card.

With a wide selection of movies genres perfect for both adults and kids, much anticipated films like Marvel Studios’ “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings,” “Eternals,” “Venom: Let There Be Carnage,” “Resident Evil: Welcome to Racoon City,” and “No Time To Die;” are just some of the movies waiting for cinephiles at SM Cinemas!

K-Pop fans will also have “Black Pink The Movie” and Monsta X: The Dreaming to look forward to, and Pinoys can get their fill of local movies like “Encanto” and “Kunwari Mahal Kita,” which will premiere starting November 24. Plus, the Metro Manila Film Festival will run from December 25 to January 7, 2022, with more Filipino movies to enjoy!

Given how dedicated SM Supermall and SM Cinema really are when it comes quality, sanitation and efficiency, it comes to no surprise that no expense was spared to make SM Cinema branches safe and the best they could be during this time of pandemic. The cinema workforce is fully vaccinated and they have the equipment needed to sanitize the movie theaters and keep it safe for incoming moviegoers.

For the newcomers reading this, cinemas in Metro Manila officially reopened on November 10 in relation to the easing restrictions as the daily count of new COVID-19 infections nationwide fell down dramatically. With the lessening restrictions, more people are allowed to go out and more businesses were given more freedom to accommodate more customers (both indoor and outdoor depending on the locations of their respective joints). Movie theaters or cinemas are obviously part of the businesses and now is the time for them to cater to people who want to experience once again the greatness of watching movies on the big screen which is something that streaming movies or TV shows at home can never match.

There are also other advantages that cinemas have over those streaming apps such as premium seating (note: SM Cinema has the Director’s Club line that offers extraordinary cinema comfort with leather seats, in-house butler service, and an exclusive food menu for guests), technologically advanced big-screen technologies (examples: IMAX, 3D and 4D) and premium sound systems (note: Netflix, HBO Go, HBO Max, Disney+ and all other streaming apps really have nothing to offer when it comes to top-notch audio.)

For those of you who really have decided to return to cinemas for your movie viewing pleasure, remember that what you pay for will not only help the cinema operators but also contribute to the economic recovery our nation badly needs to rise from this COVID-19 crisis. The money you pay for streaming services really do not help at all.

Once again, I encourage you all to take time out to support local cinemas with your family members or your friends. The cinema viewing experience is always better than streaming!

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/

If you wish to join a group of movie enthusiasts and talk about cinema, visit the Movie Fans Worldwide Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/322857711779576

Micro and small business owners can apply for government loans for 13th month pay

Christmas is gradually approaching here in the Philippines. That being said, the 13th month pay will be released to employees during the month of December, specifically before December 24. As the COVID-19 crisis brought the national economy down in 2020, its effects combined with lockdown and restrictions implemented by varied authorities (example: the surprise Metro Manila ECQ of August 2021) are still felt by economic stakeholders and lots of businesses continue to struggle to survive.

The release of the 13th month pay is indeed the next challenge for businesses to do. Fortunately for the micro and small business owners, they can come to the national government to start applying for loans with the 13th month pay in mind, according to a Philippine News Agency (PNA) report.

To put things in perspective, posted below is the excerpt from the Philippine News Agency report. Some parts in boldface…

Micro and small enterprises that are having difficulty in giving the 13th-month pay of their employees can apply for a government loan, Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) Secretary Silvestre Bello III said in a statement on Sunday.

The Labor chief made the call as he reminded employers that the grant of 13th-month pay is mandated by law. He, however, assured establishments that are still struggling amid the reopening of the economy of the government’s support through the Small Business Corporation (SBCorp).

“Let me remind the employers that the grant of 13th-month pay is mandatory. We issued a Labor Advisory where we maintained that no exemption and no deferment will be allowed on the payment of the 13th-month pay. So, with this loan facility from SB Corporation, there is no more reason to not give the 13th-month pay,” Bello said during the ceremonial launch of the loan program with the Department of Trade and Industry and its financing arm, SBCorp on Friday.

As of Nov. 12, a total of 25 loan applications amounting to PHP5.052 million were already approved by SBCorp.

Qualified borrowers are the owners of micro and small enterprises that have implemented flexible work arrangements and registered under the DOLE Establishment Reporting System as of Oct. 15, 2021.

The loan program can cover up to 40 employees per establishment and the loanable amount is at PHP12,000 per current employee.

It is a zero-interest rate, no collateral loan that is payable in 12 months, inclusive of the three-month grace period.

“I encourage our employers, especially yung mga nahihirapan pa (hard up firms), to avail of this facility so that they can comply with the mandate to pay our workers with what is due them, especially this Christmas season,” Bello said.

The above article ended stating that micro and small business owners may apply for the loans at www.bayanihancares.ph

Let me end this piece by asking you readers: Are you a micro or small business owner struggling to come up with ways to raise funds to pay the 13th month funds to your employees? Have you prepared yourselves to apply for the loans announced by the government? How hard has the lockdown and the set of restrictions been to your business operations this year?

You may answer in the comments below. If you prefer to answer privately, you may do so by sending me a direct message online.

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  HavenorFantasy@twitter.com as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/

For more South Metro Manila community news and developments, come back here soon. Also say NO to fake news, NO to irresponsible journalism, NO to misinformation, NO to plagiarists, NO to reckless publishers and NO to sinister propaganda when it comes to news and developments. For South Metro Manila community developments, member engagements, commerce and other relevant updates, join the growing South Metro Manila Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/342183059992673