Kadiwa bazaar in Muntinlupa City nets over P530,000 in first two days

In the progressive city of Muntinlupa, the Kadiwa bazaar held at the quadrangle at City Hall generated over P530,000 in sales in the first two days, according to a Manila Bulletin news report. The said bazaar is a special project involving the City Government, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), the Department of Agriculture (DAR), and the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).

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

The two-day Kadiwa Christmas bazaar at the Muntinlupa City hall quadrangle generated nearly P536,000 in sales to sellers.

The Kadiwa bazaar, an initiative of the Department of Agriculture in partnership with the Muntinlupa City government, Department of Trade and Industry, and Department of Social Welfare and Development, was held on Nov. 15 and 16.

Showcasing different Muntinlupa-made products, the Kadiwa bazaar was launched by Mayor Ruffy Biazon and DTI Asst. Sec. Dominic Tolentino on Nov. 15.

According to Biazon, “Gusto natin ma-promote ang produkto ng Lungsod ng Muntinlupa, dahil tayo ay proud (We want to promote Muntinlupa-made products because we are very proud of them).”

“Ang sagot sa kaunlaran ay nagkakaisang mamamayan (A united citizenry contributes to a progressive economy),” said Tolentino, a Muntinlupa resident.

On the first day, the bazaar generated P326,421 in sales and P209,223 on Nov. 16 for a total of P535,644 in two days.

Other officials at the launch of KADIWA were City Administrator Allan Cachuela, DA-ESO head Marilou Lobo, Alabang Central Market Administrator Randy Garcia, and Cristine Evangelista of DTI.

Let me end this piece by asking you readers: If you are a Muntinlupa City resident, what is your reaction to this development? Do you want to see more bazaars in the city selling more Muntinlupa-made products? Are you more confident now to spend time in bazaars or shopping centers knowing that COVID-19 can be avoided? Are the recent news reports highlighting the Department of Health’s (DOH) recent statements about COVID-19 infections making you afraid to go out?

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, share this article to others and also please consider making a donation to support my publishing. 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

Parañaque City ranks only 19th among Highly Urbanized Cities of the nation in terms of Competitiveness according to CMCI 2022 results

Have you heard of the words Parañaque Renaissance? Whether it is a political slogan or the description of the supposed improvements of the city, or even the name of some food or beverage product, Parañaque Renaissance was designed to make people believe that the City of Parañaque is great and prospering.

Recently, the results of the Cities and Municipalities Competitiveness Index 2022 Rankings (CMCI 2022) were published and already there were local government units (LGUs) and provincial governments that highlighted what they achieved.

The City of Muntinlupa finished #1 among all Highly Urbanized Cities (HUCs) in the category of Resiliency while also ranking 5th overall on Competitiveness, 4th on Infrastructure and 10th on Innovation. Quezon City, which is the Most Competitive among all HUCs, finished with #1 on Innovation and #2 on Infrastructure, Resiliency, Government Efficiency and Economic Dynamism. Pasay City emerged as #1 on Economic Dynamism while finished 3rd overall on Competitiveness.

Parañaque, the city that has BF Homes and Better Living among its many residential communities within its borders, ended up with 19th place in the category of Competitiveness among HUCs. To be clear, there are 33 HUCs all in all. Parañaque finished 10th place on Economic Dynamism, 13th place on Infrastructure, 16th place on Resiliency, 23rd place on Government Efficiency and 29th place on Innovation. The results can viewed at https://cmci.dti.gov.ph/rankings-data.php?unit=Highly%20Urbanized%20Cities

Let me end this piece by asking you readers: If you are a Parañaque City resident, what can you say about your city’s performance in the newest CMCI study? Do you think your city became less competitive due to criminal activities (click here, here, here, here, here, here and here) or perhaps due to the COVID-19 pandemic? Do you think that your new city government officials plan to do something to make the city more competitive with other highly urbanized cities of the nation? Based on the latest CMCI results, do you consider Parañaque a great city at all?

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, share this article to others and also please consider making a donation to support my publishing. 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 athttps://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 declared the Most Resilient Highly Urbanized City of the Nation (2022 CMCI)

The City of Muntinlupa achieved another tremendous honor that local residents can be delighted with as it was declared Number One among all Highly Urbanized Cities of the Nation on the category of Resiliency as based on the results of the 2022 Cities and Municipalities Competitiveness Index (CMCI), according to a Manila Bulletin news report. Muntinlupa also made it in other categories among highly urbanized cities.

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

Muntinlupa was recognized as No. 1 in resiliency and No. 5 overall most competitive among all highly urbanized cities in the country under the 2022 Cities and Municipalities Competitiveness Index (CMCI).

The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) awarded outstanding local government units (LGUs) during the 10th Cities and Municipalities Competitiveness Summit held at the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC) on Oct. 20.

According to the CMCI website, “local competitiveness is how a city or municipality knows its resources and how it uses these to improve its standard of living.”

LGUs are ranked based on CMCI’s five pillars: economic dynamism, government efficiency, infrastructure, resilience and innovation.

This is the third straight year that Muntinlupa topped the resiliency pillar among highly urbanized cities in the country.

Resiliency is the capacity of a locality to facilitate businesses and industries to create jobs, raise productivity, and increase the incomes of citizens over time despite of the shocks and stresses it encounters,” according to the CMCI.

It added, “This implies that the role of local governments is critical in ensuring a competitive environment to make businesses sustain their profits, create jobs, and increase the productivity of its people. In order for localities to be able to do this, it must be resilient in its infrastructure, governance, social and environmental systems.”

The resiliency pillar is based on annual disaster drill, budget for disaster risk reduction and management plan, disaster risk reduction plan, emergency infrastructure, employed population, early warning system, local risk assessments, land use plan, sanitary system and utilities.

In addition, Muntinlupa is No. 4 in infrastructure and 10 in innovation among highly urbanized cities in the country.

The above report ended stating that City Administrator Allan Cachuela and Local Economic and Investment Promotion Office head Gary Llama represented Mayor Ruffy Biazon at the ceremony.

Let me end this piece by asking you readers: If you are a Muntinlupa City resident, what is your reaction to this development? Are you happy with what the city achieved in terms of being competitive with the many other highly urbanized cities?

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, share this article to others and also please consider making a donation to support my publishing. 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 declared the Most Resilient among all Highly Urbanized Cities

The progressive City of Muntinlupa continued to make waves around the nation as the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) formally recognized it for achieving 1st place in the category of resiliency among all the Highly Urbanized Cities (HUCs) of the nation based on the results of the 2021 Cities and Municipalities Competitiveness Index (CMCI), the Manila Bulletin reported. The plaque of recognition was received by the City Government.

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

The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) awarded the Muntinlupa city government a plaque of recognition on Wednesday, June 29, for ranking No. 1 in resiliency among all highly-urbanized cities (HUCs) in the country under the 2021 Cities and Municipalities Competitiveness Index (CMCI).

According to the CMCI website, “local competitiveness is how a city or municipality knows its resources and how it uses these to improve its standard of living.

Outgoing Mayor and congressman-elect Jaime Fresnedi received the plaque of recognition from DTI Competitiveness Bureau Director Lilian Salonga.

Muntinlupa topped the resilience pillar of CMCI for two consecutive years. The resiliency pillar ranking is based on annual disaster drill, budget for disaster risk reduction and management plan, disaster risk reduction plan, emergency infrastructure, employed population, early warning system, local risk assessments, land use plan, sanitary system and utilities.

Also joining the program were City Administrator Allan Cachuela, Business Permits and Licensing Office executives led by Eli Hilapo, City Planning and Development Office acting chief Alvin Veron, International Relations Officer James Arriola, National Quality and Competitiveness Division chief Ma. Sheryl Santos, and DTI-NCRO Area 2 Division Chief Rowena D.B. San Jose.

The DTI, through the National Competitiveness Council, conducts the annual CMCI, which ranks local government units in the country based on four pillars: economic dynamism, government efficiency, infrastructure, and resiliency.

In the 2021 rankings for highly-urbanized cities in the country, defined as LGUs with at least 200,000 population and latest annual income of at least P50 million, Muntinlupa ranked first with a score of 20.68.

In the overall CMCI rankings for HUCs in the country, Muntinlupa placed fifth with a score of 48.

The above article ended stating that Muntinlupa ranked 5th in Infrastructure, 7th in Government Efficiency and 19th in Economic Dynamism based on the findings of the 2021 CMCI.

Let me end this piece by asking you readers: If you are a Muntinlupa City resident, what is your reaction to this development? Are you happy with what Muntinlupa City achieved according to the 2021 CMCI results?

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

I Love Israel: Joint Economic Commission (JEC) established by Israel and the Philippines

Trade between Israel and the Philippines could improve and help develop each other economically in the years to come as the two nations strengthened their ties further by establishing the Joint Economic Commission (JEC), according to a recent report by BusinessWorld.

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

THE Philippines and Israel said they formed a Joint Economic Commission (JEC) that will explore pathways to improving trade.

In a statement on Thursday, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) said Trade Secretary Ramon M. Lopez signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Israel Economy and Industry Minister Orna Barbivai in Jerusalem on June 7 that created the JEC.

The MoU seeks the establishment of a bilateral consultative mechanism that will develop and strengthen trade, enhance investments, and advance economic ties between the Philippines and Israel,” the DTI said.

“In establishing a JEC, the two countries agree to exchange information on economic issues, identify and implement cooperative projects, organize consultations, missions, and official visits and enhance cooperation and linkages with their respective private sector,” it added.

The DTI said the MoU will seek to explore industries where the two countries can collaborate with a view towards diversifying trade and investments.

He added that priority sectors for promotion include agribusiness/agriculture production, energy efficiency technologies and renewable energy, infrastructure and public-private partnership (PPP) projects in infrastructure, real estate development, logistics, artificial intelligence, information technology and business process management (IT-BPM) including shared services, electronics manufacturing, and digital infrastructure.

Mr. Lopez told reporters via Viber that the initial investments from the investment promotion and protection agreement (IPPA) between the Philippines and Israel could bring around $150 million in investment in 2022.

“Early harvest could be around $150 million this year,” Mr. Lopez said.

Also signed on June 7, the IPPA provides the framework for a closer investment relationship between Israel and Philippines. It also specifies investment protection elements such as national treatment, most favored nation treatment, free transfers, rules-based expropriation and compensation, and investor-state dispute settlement.

The DTI also recently signed an MoU seeking to strengthen cooperation with the Israel Innovation Authority.

This newest development is undoubtedly critical as both the Philippines and Israel share the same goal of recovering from the damage of the COVID-19 crisis and emerging stronger economically and socially. The JEC between the two nations is something we must be thankful to God for.

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!

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. 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/

I Love Israel: Israel and the Philippines sign business agreement

The relationship between Israel and the Philippines moved forward some more as they recently signed a major agreement related to investments and economic cooperation, according to a news report by The Jerusalem Post.

To put things in perspective, posted below is the excerpt from report of The Jerusalem Post news report. Some parts in boldface…

Finance Minister Avigdor Liberman and Filipino Secretary of Trade and Industry Ramon Lopez signed an agreement on Tuesday that encourages and protects investments between Israel and the Philippines.

The trade deal

The deal aims to create an investment environment that encourages economic activity by providing a basket of commitments to investors from both Israel and the Philippines. It is expected to provide security and stability to foreign investors and encourage capital movements between the two countries. It covers regulatory issues, prevention of expropriation of assets, free flow of capital and advanced protection mechanisms for the rights of foreign investors in the host country.

The investment protection agreement signed will help develop economic ties between the countries,” Liberman said. “The commitment between the countries to encourage mutual investment and provide optimal conditions for investors will strengthen existing economic activity and enable new opportunities for the private sector in both countries.”

The Philippines’ economy has grown significantly in the last decade, averaging about 6.4% annually from 2010-2019, according to the World Bank.

Following the coronavirus pandemic, the Philippines managed to bounce back from a 35% decline in global investment flow in 2020, increasing its incoming investment almost 30% this year.

The high growth in the Philippines over the last decade and the increase in investment flows to it, together with the agreement signed, will strengthen economic cooperation and increase investment between the countries,” said Shira Greenberg, the Finance Ministry’s chief economist.

“The Philippines is a major partner in significant Asia-Pacific regional trade agreements, and in conjunction with the investment agreement signed today, it will open up new opportunities for Israeli companies and investors operating in these markets,” she said.

In recent times, the initial batch of Filipino hotel workers were sent to Israel to help its hospitality/tourism industry. Already the State of Israel is looking forward to stronger bilateral ties with the Philippines under the incoming administration of new President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos. Marcos, who had met Israeli Ambassador Ilan Fluss, will formally take office on June 30, 2022.

As for this most recent development between the Republic of the Philippines and the State of Israel, the agreement can lead to a new wave of investments and even business innovation between them. Both nations have their own populations of not just trained workers but also entrepreneurs and investors (both individuals and organizations) who can visit the other nation for fresh opportunities to progress and prosper. Israel itself has an enduring record of being a hot spot for business innovation and startups. As such, the protection of investments between Israel and the Philippines is indeed crucial. This newest development is something we can all be thankful to the Lord for.

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!

In ending this I Love Israel piece, posted below are Israel-related videos plus Philippine news 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. 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/

COVID-19 Crisis: DTI calls for gradual shift to Alert Level 1

Are you tired of living with restrictions and government overreach these past two years as a result of the COVID-19 crisis? A lot of people are not just tired of it but also frustrated as many of them saw their loss of income, losing their jobs, the closure of their businesses as well as an enormous negative impact on their lives. To manage the people living under the pandemic all around the Philippines, an Alert Level system was established months ago as part of quarantine in relation to the number of new and active COVID-19 cases. Currently Metro Manila is under Alert Level 2, however in the City of Parañaque the restrictions on the unvaccinated are still in effect. Parañaque is one of four Metro Manila local government units (LGUs) that still have not lifted the restrictions on unvaccinated people while Metro Manila is placed under Alert Level 2.

For economic recovery and the uplifting of the country, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) called for the gradual shift to the looser and more business-friendly Alert Level 1, according to a GMA Network news report. It should be noted that new cases of COVID-19 infections have declined recently.

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

The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) on Wednesday backed the calls to downgrade the quarantine status of the country to Alert Level 1 to open more businesses and jobs amid the decreasing number of new COVID-19 infections.

In a Super Radyo dzBB interview, DTI Undersecretary Ruth Castelo said should the country (shift) to Alert Level 1, which is the lowest in the alert level system, it has to be done slowly as there is still the lingering threat of COVID-19.

“Kung mag Alert Level 1 tayo, na gusto din ni (DTI) Sec. Mon (Lopez) na mangyari pero dahan-dahan lang, nandiyan pa rin ‘yung virus. So, kailangan pa rin nating sundin lahat ng health protocols,” she said.

(If we shift to Alert Level 1, which Sec. Mon wants to happen, it should be done slowly because the virus is still there. So, we still need to follow all the health protocols.)

Currently, the National Capital Region (NCR) and several provinces are under Alert Level 2 from February 1 to 15.

Under Alert Level 2, certain establishments and activities are allowed at 50% capacity indoors for fully vaccinated adults and minors, and 70% capacity outdoors, even if unvaccinated.

Meanwhile, under Alert Level 1, all establishments, persons, or activities, are allowed to operate, work, or be undertaken at full on-site or venue/seating capacity provided it follows minimum health standards. This, however, excludes areas under granular lockdown.

Castelo said about 1.5 million businesses in the country can operate at full capacity if the quarantine restrictions are further eased, thus allowing more people to return to work.

“Pagka nag-100% na, full capacity na lahat ng negosyo, lahat nung nagtatrabaho before COVID, ‘yun na din ang makakabalik ngayon,” she said.

(If the businesses are at 100% or at full capacity, all employees working before the pandemic could go back to work now.)

When several areas in the country, including the NCR, moved from Alert Level 3 to Alert Level 2, the DTI estimated that around 100,000 to 200,000 employees got back to work. That is an addition of almost 16,000 workers weekly, Castelo said.

It would be nice to see the shift to Alert Level 1 actually happen as it means better economic recovery, more employment and a healthier society. I personally want the government-imposed restrictions on businesses and on people removed. Remember the sudden ECQ (enhanced community quarantine) in Metro Manila that happened last August followed by the ban on outdoor exercise? A lot of people got frustrated with those two Metro Manila unfortunate developments months ago. Observe closely how the Metro Manila mayors and the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) behave and make decisions. Oh yes, Benhur Abalos is no longer MMDA chairman.

Meanwhile, vaccination programs and COVID-19 testing are being organized most of the time and the more people get vaccinated, the better for the nation and its economic recovery. It would be great for the Philippines to acquire more Sputnik Light and Sputnik V vaccines as they have proven to be effective in protecting people from the infectious Omicron variant. Very recently, Sputnik Light has been approved for use in India and that is something the national government’s officials should seriously consider for acquiring more vaccines for the entire Philippines.

Let me end this piece by asking you readers: What do you think about the DTI’s call for the gradual adjustment into the looser Alert Level 1? Do you think the national government as well as local government units (LGUs) have gotten too far with governing and managing us people? Do you think that the more people get vaccinated, the more our country will overcome this pandemic?

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

Muntinlupa is the Most Resilient Highly Urbanized City and also the fifth Most Competitive City of the nation

No matter how hard the pandemic hit the Philippines, the City Government of Muntinlupa continued to excel as it was named the Most Resilient Highly Urbanized City while finishing as the 5th Most Competitive City of the nation for the past year, according to a Manila Bulletin report.

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

The City of Muntinlupa emerged as the No. 5 most competitive and No. 1 most resilient highly urbanized city (HUC) in the Philippines.

The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), in partnership with Ayala Corporation and Globe Telecom, recognized the most competitive cities and municipalities this year in the 9th Regional Competitiveness Summit announced online on Dec. 13.

Local government units (LGUs) all over the country were ranked based on DTI’s Cities and Municipalities Competitiveness Index (CMCI), which is the sum of four pillars: economic dynamism, government efficiency, infrastructure and resiliency.

In the overall most competitive highly urbanized cities in the country for 2021, Muntinlupa bagged fifth place. The overall rankings for cities and municipalities are based on the four pillars.

In addition, Muntinlupa ranked No. 1 in resiliency, No. 5 in infrastructure, No. 6 most improved city, and No. 7 in government efficiency among highly urbanized cities.

“From the City Government of Muntinlupa, I sincerely thank the Department of Trade and Industry for recognizing Muntinlupa City as one of the most competitive cities in the Philippines,” said Muntinlupa Mayor Jaime Fresnedi.

According to the CMCI, “resiliency is the capacity of a locality to facilitate businesses and industries to create jobs, raise productivity, and increase the incomes of citizens over time despite the shocks and stresses it encounters.”

“This implies that the role of local governments is critical in ensuring a competitive environment to make businesses sustain their profits, create jobs, and increase the productivity of its people. In order for localities to be able to do this, it must be resilient in its infrastructure, governance, social and environmental systems,” it added.

Let me end this piece by asking you readers: If you are a Muntinlupa City resident, what can you say about this latest local development? Are you delighted with the most recent achievements Muntinlupa made while competing with many other cities? Do these city competitiveness achievements strengthen your trust in the City Government?

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: More support for businesses by means of easing restrictions

Are you a business owner who has been struggling to make ends meet during the pandemic here in the Philippines? On the national level, more support for businesses by means of easing the restrictions has been pushed for by Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship Jose Ma. “Joey” Concepcion III according to a recent news report by GMA Network.

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

Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship Jose Ma. “Joey” Concepcion III on Tuesday called for the need to open up more of the economy in the final quarter of the year, for businesses to recover and be able to pay their dues.

According to Concepcion, the fourth quarter is crucial for businesses given the historically higher consumer spending amid the Christmas holidays.

“We have to open the economy because this is the last quarter. This is time when most negosyantes can get back what they lost in the previous months. Babayaran nila mga 13th month pay, may utang nila sa bangko, sa suppliers [They will have to pay the 13th month pay, their loans in the banks, with suppliers],” he said during the Laging Handa virtual briefing.

Concepcion has been pushing for the imposition of “bakuna bubbles” or pockets of micro-herd immunity among closed groups such as homes and workplaces.

Under the proposed measure, vaccinations will be mandated for a range of indoor gatherings in a bit to boost the country’s immunization efforts and only allow privileges to those fully vaccinated.

At present conditions with only 30% indoor dining allowed for fully vaccinated individuals in Metro Manila, Concepcion said businesses do not gain much, noting that this should be increased to at least 50% to carry businesses over to 2022, or even 70% by November or December.

“Ito ang panahon that we should start to live with COVID. Kung pabagsak ang [If there is a downtrend on the] trajectory ng infection level, then we should open up more and more and then keep an eye, watch out if it reverses then we pull back and we can push back,” said Concepcion.

“For now, it’s only one quarter left ’til the end of the year. Bigay na natin ‘to sa mga negosyaante para mabuhay sila ’til next year. [Let’s give this to the businesses for the thrive until next year],” he added.

In relation to the news above, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) called for businesses to be open on all alert levels. The Cinema Exhibitors Association of the Philippines (CEAP) appealed to the Inter-agency Task Force (IATF) for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases to allow the limited operations of cinemas under the Alert Level 4.

Let me end this piece by asking you readers: What do you think about Joey Concepcion’s statements on supporting businesses a lot? Do you feel confident about the further reopening of the national economy? Do you think that the Metro Manila Council (MMC) and the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) will understand Concepcion’s pro-business push and make wise decisions this time around?

Can you imagine the MMC and MMDA recommending another enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) to the IATF in the near future that will surely destroy jobs and hurt businesses all over again?

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 as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.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: A new attempt to reopen cinemas in Metro Manila under Alert Level system

It has been so long since the cinemas in Metro Manila have been closed and have not screened any new films since the start of the pandemic which negatively affected the local cinema industry’s operators and their employees. 300,000 employees to be precise.

Early this year, Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) announced that it has allowed a variety of businesses around the Philippines to resume operations to recover from the COVID-19 crisis and cinemas were among those businesses. However the mayors of Metro Manila opposed the decision and according to the Manila Times’ news report, Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) chairman Benhur Abalos noted that “movie theaters are enclosed and air-conditioned spaces where people stay for more than 30 minutes, conditions that increase the risk of coronavirus transmission.” Abalos lamented that there was this fear of a possible spike in COVID-19 infection if cinemas were allowed to reopen. The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) issued a memorandum calling for the reopening of cinemas in GCQ (general community quarantine) areas starting March 5, 2021 but the said businesses remain closed.

That was back then and by now, many millions of residents of Metro Manila have been vaccinated for COVID-19, many businesses went through the Safety Seal program and a new system of community control has been implemented. Since the pandemic started, cinemas in Metro Manila were shut down with the exception of some cinemas that were turned into temporary venues for COVID-19 vaccination.

Now there is renewed hope for Metro Manila cinema operators and their employees as the Manila Bulletin reported that the IATF will discuss reopening cinemas under the Alert Level system.

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

Malacañang said the government’s pandemic task force is set to discuss the possible reopening of cinemas in areas under the Alert Level 3, part of the new system being implemented in Metro Manila response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque made the statement after the Cinema Exhibitors Association of the Philippines (CEAP) appealed to the Inter-agency Task Force (IATF) for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases to allow the limited operations of cinemas under the Alert Level 4.

In his press briefing on Thursday, October 7, Roque said that the IATF will discuss the reopening of cinemas but not in areas under Alert Level 4.

“Ang alam ko po nasa agenda ‘yan mamaya ng IATF pero ang pagbubuaks po na pag-uusapan po ay Level 3, hindi Level 4 (I know it’s part of the agenda of the IATF later but the reopening that will be discussed will be in Alert Level 3, not Level 4),” he said.

Under the current guidelines for the pilot implementation of the Alert Levels System for COVID-19 response in Metro Manila, cinemas will be allowed to operate at a maximum of 50 percent venue capacity under Alert Level 2.

In February this year, the IATF allowed the reopening of traditional cinemas in areas under the general community quarantine (GCQ) but Metro Manila mayors opposed this decision in fear that it may trigger superspreader events.

In a Facebook post, the CEAP appealed to the IATF to allow the reopening of cinemas, ensuring that the industry values the health and well-being of its employees and moviegoers.

According to CEAP, the cinema industry has ensured that all employees are fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

The group likewise said that a number of cinemas have been awarded the Safety Seal Certification by their local government units (LGUs) which affirms that they are compliant with the minimum health standards set by the government.

The Manila Bulletin report ended mentioning that theater managers have gone through occupational safety and health training.

Let me end this piece by asking you readers: Do you believe it is high time for cinemas in Metro Manila to reopen now that many millions of people in the metropolis have been vaccinated for COVID-19 and a lot of businesses have made efforts to meet the requirements of health protocols (and the Safety Seal program)? Do you believe that the MMDA and the Metro Manila Council (MMC) actually care about the state of the 300,000 employees of the nation’s cinema industry? Do you think Abalos and the Metro Manila mayors will still make decisions out of fear as far as movie theaters are concerned?

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 as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.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