In keeping with its ambitious goal of enabling business owners of all sizes to tap into the worldwide market, the nation’s top logistics company, In-line Forwarder, gathered Cebu exporters last October for the “Usapang Exports: Unlocking Export Opportunities” event, which was sponsored by DTI Region 7 (Central Visayas) and the Department of Trade and Industry’s Export Marketing Bureau (DTI-EMB).
Almost a hundred entrepreneurs and exporters from important sectors like furniture, handicrafts, and agriculture convened at Cebu City’s Golden Prince Hotel. Alongside leading industry experts from the Food and Drug Administration, Department of Environment and Natural Resources-Forest Management Bureau, Department of Trade and Industry-Bureau of International Trade Relations, and Bureau of Customs, In-line Forwarder discussed the nuances of logistics and brokerage solutions for export fulfillment.
“It is a huge honor for us to collaborate with the DTI EMB, as well as key agencies of the Philippine government to take our export sector to the next level,” says Herbert Caragay, Operations Head of In-Line Forwarder. “Helping our community of micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) across the nation through our strategic expertise in logistics is key for our exporters to navigate the evolving dynamics of global trade and supply chain.”
Usapang Exports is an official DTI-EMB project under its Philippine Export Competitiveness Program which aims to capacitate existing and aspiring exporters through learning sessions on export opportunities, trends, cross-border regulations, and other timely topics. One-on-one consultation sessions were also conducted in Cebu by In-line Forwarder, Department of Agriculture-Bureau of Plant and Industry, DENR, and the Philippine Exporters Confederation.
According to In-line Forwarder, they now have 6 offices across the country, including Cebu, and is bound to open a new warehouse in the United States for import-export facilitation and cross-border fulfillment operations.
Key preparations are also underway towards the National Exporters Week from December 4 to 7 spearheaded by the DTI-EMB, Export Development Council, and PHILEXPORT. It will be a crucial gathering of large export players, government agencies, and export enablers including In-Line Forwarder who will be part of the enablers exhibit at the Sheraton Hotel on December 7, the same day as the National Exporters Congress. The theme for this year is “Agile Philippines: Empowering Exporters towards Global Excellence.”
MSMEs can register for a free account at www.inlineforwarder.ph to take advantage of In-line Forwarder’s discounted pricing for its export service. Additionally, you can get in touch with them online at www.facebook.com/InlineForwarders, which is their official Facebook page.
The Bank of New York Mellon has awarded Sterling Bank of Asia (SBA) the Straight-Through Processing (STP) Award once more in recognition of the bank’s outstanding payment formatting performance in 2022. The bank has been the recipient of this award for five years running. It is an acknowledgment of SBA’s dedication to quality and its capacity to quickly and accurately complete payment formatting tasks for MT103/MT202 payments in financial operations.
In the banking sector, STP is a crucial performance metric that assesses the effectiveness of payment processing. SBA’s achievement in meeting BNY Mellon’s stringent standards for offshore transaction security, procedural compliance, and processing speed is demonstrated by the STP Award.
This award is a testament to the bank’s unwavering commitment to quality and its commitment to giving its clients smooth, effective financial services. “Recognition of excellence becomes a crucial benchmark for financial institutions in the dynamic and rapidly evolving landscape of the banking industry,” stated Cecilio San Pedro, president and CEO of the SBA.
Calling in working students to unwrap the gift of education and step up in your career!
Working students are getting ready for a special fusion of joy and academic focus as the Christmas season draws near. These people, who balance work and school, look forward to their Christmas bonus as a well-earned prize for a hard-working year.
The bonus becomes a crucial event for non-graduate employees who are not enrolled in school right now but are thinking about going back to school. This is the ideal moment to use the festivities as an opportunity for introspection and inspiration for future learning.
This bonus offers employees the opportunity to invest in themselves rather than just shop for holiday gifts. In addition to presents and indulgences, this additional money can be a lifesaver for people who are struggling to make ends meet because they lack a college degree. The obstacles of obtaining ideal jobs, getting promotions, and overcoming insecurities can seem overwhelming.
Think about putting your Christmas bonus toward things that can make a real difference. This little financial boost isn’t just for the holidays; it’s a way to make life better and set yourself up for success in the long run. Maybe go back to college, invest, go on a trip, become an entrepreneur, or pursue a new hobby. The possibilities are diverse, providing a chance to invest in your personal and professional growth. Here are ways you can start.
Restart your college education
In today’s professional landscape, getting a college degree is important. By doing so, you can improve your chances at securing a promotion or make yourself more desirable to potential employers. If the lack of time has always held you back from pursuing further studies, Mapúa Malayan Digital College (MMDC) is the premier digital-first college that delivers an advanced online curriculum designed for modern Filipino working students.
MMDC’s specialized courses in business administration and information technology, crafted by professionals with rich expertise from academia and the workforce, prioritize practical learning to cultivate essential soft and hard skills for workplace success. Notably, the institution stands out by embracing innovation, eliminating traditional exams and tests from its approach.
At the heart of the MMDC digital education experience is its Projects, Problems, and Cases model which emphasizes real-world applications of a student’s learnings. MMDC offers flexible synchronous classes with professors, allowing a maximum of 7.5 hours per week, distributed across Mondays and Tuesdays. These classes are available in the morning, afternoon, and evening, providing students with the flexibility to accommodate their work commitments. Additionally, students have the option to change their schedule midway through the term. This setup is designed to cater to working students, enabling them to pursue education and enhance their career prospects in the long term. Students can enroll for as low as 11,500 pesos per term for three subjects, making quality education accessible and affordable as well.
You can restart your college at any term in MMDC. Application for new students and transferees to join starting the second term of SY 2023-2024 is ongoing. Classes start on December 13, 2023. To apply, visit https://www.mmdc.mcl.edu.ph/
Investing is an effective way to build wealth and make your money work for you. If going into the stock market seems like an intimidating prospect, there are many lower-risk options to get started. Mutual funds and Unit Investment Trust Funds (UITFs) can be great sources of passive income, while government-guaranteed savings programs like the Pag-Ibig MP2 allow for people to get started with low amounts to cash out.
Go on a trip
Travelling has many benefits. Whether you’re going solo or planning a trip with family and friends, travelling gives you an opportunity to disconnect, to immerse yourself in new experiences and come back with memories that can last a lifetime.
Become an entrepreneur
If you’re a self-starter with an entrepreneurial mindset, your Christmas bonus could help kickstart the small business you’ve always wanted. As online shopping continues to boom, all it takes is a little capital and a bit of strategizing to turn your groundbreaking idea or your passion project into a sustainable business.
Pursue a new hobby
Interests can improve your abilities and excite the brain. Taking up a new pastime can improve your problem-solving, creativity, and communication skills—skills that can improve your personal and professional performance.
Make a promise to yourself as the year draws to an end: allow your Christmas bonus to serve as the impetus for a more promising and self-assured future. Set yourself up for a successful and rewarding path ahead by enrolling now, making prudent investments, traveling confidently, innovating without fear, and nurturing your passions.
The executive appointments strengthen Manulife’s focus on agency and distribution transformation, and health and financial protection
Sailesh Nalinakshan has been appointed as the company’s new Chief Agency Officer (CAO) and Grace Mallabo has been named as the company’s new Chief Health and Product Officer (CHPO). Manulife Philippines is the local branch of the worldwide financial services provider Manulife.
Sailesh Nalinakshan, who was previously Manulife Philippines’ Head of Agency Transformation and Strategy, is expanding his responsibilities as CAO. In this capacity, he oversaw the creation and implementation of the company’s new agency operating model. With an emphasis on tactics that support initiatives on digitalization, sales and productivity, talent recruitment and development, training, and data analytics-based planning and decision-making, he will continue to empower Manulife’s thousands-strong agency force in his new position. Nalinakshan served as a member of Manulife’s Asia Distribution Team and was located in Hong Kong before joining the Philippine leadership team.
“We are happy to welcome Sailesh as he brings his extensive experience in distribution management into his new role, leading our Philippines agency team and bringing our distribution network to the next level,” said Rahul Hora, President and Chief Executive Officer, Manulife Philippines. “As depth, expansion, and quality continue to be key enablers for our bigger and bolder growth ambitions, his strategic vision and leadership will play a pivotal role in strengthening our agency distribution channels and driving our growth trajectory for years ahead.”
Meanwhile, Grace Mallabo will spearhead Manulife Philippines’ health strategy, product development and management, and in-force management to help meet the growing demand among Filipinos for life insurance solutions that can support their health and wellness journey, while providing them protection and financial security in the future. With Mallabo at the helm, Manulife Philippines aims to create more innovative, accessible, and relevant products and maximize customer lifetime value through effective in-force management and product innovations that are tailor-fit to Filipinos’ evolving behavior and priorities. Prior to joining Manulife, she had nearly two decades of professional experience in the insurance industry, with a strong track record in strategy, product management, and health business leadership.
“Grace’s leadership will be crucial in driving Manulife Philippines’ goals to bridge the country’s protection gap. Given her vast experience developing innovative life and health solutions that can help enrich people’s lives, we are excited to welcome her to our growing winning team as we deliver on our goals for our customers and the communities we serve,” said Hora.
This year’s CEAP National Convention is especially important since it takes place in the midst of an unparalleled period of difficulties and changes in the education sector. For a considerable amount of time, CEAP has led the way in lobbying, solidarity, synodality, and transformative education. Each year, this unparalleled occasion offers a forum for educators, administrators, partners, and stakeholders to convene, share ideas, collaboratively tackle the constantly changing demands and obstacles of the education industry, and rejoice as a community.
Rex Education also saw firsthand how the CEAP National Convention is a cerebral and spiritual trip that mirrors the shared goals of the member institutions and partners to uplift hope, overcome obstacles, and advance high-quality education for everybody, all while keeping Catholic religion at its center. With “Pilgrims of Hope: Exploring Pathways to Synodality” as its subject, this year’s conference is a testament to CEAP’s ongoing mission of promoting Filipino Catholic education in order to help the Church and society. We are honored to be a part of the CEAP convention, Rex Education.
In this journey, REX, with its decades-long commitment to Philippine education steps onto the convention stage reaffirming its role as duty-bearers of education and an ally to educators and educational institutions, including Catholic schools and organizations, among others. The theme of synodality—journeying together as people of God—is intricately woven into the fabric of REX’s story and its mission to nurture every child for lifelong learning—a journey of a lifetime, for every Filipino whole learner.
Rex Education Hub: Paths to Lifelong Learning
For the CEAP convention, REX brought back its Educational Hub, featuring its diverse and extensive collection of educational resources spanning early childhood education through the formative years in K–12 and to higher education and professional or adult education. Rex Education’s wide array of quality and thoughtfully developed learning materials have been designed for every learner, from early childhood to adulthood, REX is present in every stage and opportunity for the child to learn, be happy, and succeed in life.
REX’s resources also offer a comprehensive selection of solutions for teachers, parents, and learning companions, all to complement and enrich teaching and learning processes and experiences, including values that foster learner development.
Under Early Childhood Education (ECE), REX exhibited its Little Explorers brand with over 100 titles, including the Hello Animals books. With a focus on values and holistic development, they are designed to stimulate young minds, encourage creativity, and lay the foundations for lifelong learning.
REX also offers a broad range of resources for the K–12 program. For this year, REX introduced some of its latest titles for 2024. These include worktexts in Science, Math, and Language, aligned with the evolving needs of learners, educators, and educational institutions.
As learners progress to higher education and embark on their professional journey, REX continues its committed presence in their overall growth. REX also unveiled its latest educational resources at the event, encompassing various fields, including Business and Accountancy, Criminal Justice Education, Teacher Education, Hospitality and Tourism, and General Education programs. These newly introduced materials are expected to equip students with the essential knowledge, skills, and values required to excel in their chosen career paths.
REX’s participation at the 2023 CEAP National Convention goes far beyond featuring its educational resources. It symbolizes dedication to learners of all ages. It is also a testament to Rex Education’s unwavering commitment, just as with the other CEAP delegates, to journey together, with hope, toward a brighter future for Philippine education.
REX supports DepEd’s MATATAG Agenda
REX’s participation at the convention is also a resounding declaration of support for DepEd’s newly launched MATATAG Curriculum. The MATATAG Curriculum is expected to decongest the present K to 12 Curriculum by reducing the number of competencies and focusing more on the development of foundational skills, and in the process improve students’ learning outcomes.
“REX is in full support of the MATATAG agenda, particularly the initiative of making the curriculum relevant to produce job-ready, active, and responsible citizens,” said Don Timothy Buhain, chief executive officer of Rex Education. “We believe that the implementation of the new curriculum will further enhance the quality of education in the Philippines and contribute to the holistic development of our learners.”
Beyond words, REX demonstrates its commitment to this objective by its activities and deeds. Engaging Edukampyons, those who uphold education duties, REX seeks to strengthen their ability to uphold, defend, and fulfill every Filipino learner’s right to a high-quality education. In order to create high-quality educational resources, REX therefore keeps working with renowned writers, subject area coordinators, experienced educators, curriculum development experts, and other subject matter experts.
All things considered, the 2023 CEAP National Convention continues to be a driving force and source of inspiration for Catholic adherents working in the field of education, as well as a symbol of resiliency and hope for the coming generation. Over 3,000 delegates from across the country attended CEAP 2023, which was successfully held from October 17–20, 2023, at the Water Front Hotel in Cebu City.
Rex Education was honored at the 45th Catholic Mass Media Awards (CMMA) and the 21st Manuel L. Quezon Gawad Parangal.
Every year in October, the Quezon Gawad Parangal is a component of the local government’s celebration of the creation of the city. At the 2023 awards ceremony, people and organizations that demonstrated excellence in the domains of social service, business and entrepreneurship, law and justice, environment and sanitation, and science and technology were honored.
Rex Education was one of the fifteen people and organizations honored at the esteemed event this year. On October 25, the 21st Manuel L. Quezon Gawad Parangal was held at the PETA Theater Center.
The award was given to REX for its noteworthy commitment to teaching the public via literature by a selection panel consisting of department heads from Quezon City, past recipients of the prize, and well-respected individuals from other industries. Additionally, the local government highlighted REX’s innovative contributions to the educational publishing sector, especially through Rex Book Store, Inc. (RBSI).
Learning materials covering early childhood education, basic education, high school, tertiary education, law, and post-collegiate materials are among RBSI’s contributions to education publication. RBSI is proud of its wide network, which consists of 24 branches spread throughout Mindanao, Visayas, and Luzon. This just serves to reinforce REX’s goal of preparing each child for lifelong learning. It is a pleasure and an honor to be the preferred study partner for Filipino students and to be acknowledged by the communities REX serves.
At the 45th CMMA, REX’s published works received recognition as well. Every year, the CMMA honors people and groups that create content for print, radio, and social media that upholds moral principles. Virtual winners were pre-announced by the CMMA on October 27.
With the magazine “Backpack,” REX and Catechetical Media Network (CMN-Asia, Inc.) won Best Children’s Magazine; in the Best Youth Magazine category, REX and CMN-Asia’s “Crossroads” took first place.
Allan Alejo Jr.’s “Tangkilikin ang Sariling Atin (Marketing Our Local Products),” which was released by REX and CMN-Asia, won the Best Editorial Cartoon award. Felix C. Alcantara’s “Si Nelia, Si Marta, at Si Maria,” which was released by REX and CMN-Asia, won an award for Best Comic Story.
These citations increase REX’s motivation and commitment to creating high-quality educational resources that can encourage morality and spirituality in Filipino youth. REX consistently aims to support the whole growth of the learner—one who is engaged, safe, healthy, supported, challenged, and values-driven.
With these honors, REX is still motivated to keep becoming better and aiming for greatness—for the sake of the bata, mamamayan, and bayan.
During its yearly Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony, Hotel Lucky Chinatown (HLC) brightened the hearts of its respected guests, customers, families, and friends during the busy holiday season. The message conveyed was one of hope, which goes beyond festive cheer.
The celebration, which took place on November 8, 2023, in the hotel’s Main Lobby, was enhanced by the attendance of students from the Philippine Institute for the Deaf (PID), which is HLC’s official partner. Honoring his city with love and support, Hon. Chairwoman Marissa Alejandro of Barangay 293 and Vice Mayor Yul Servo’s representative, Mr. Archie Dema-ala, were present to lend their distinguished presence to the occasion.
The glowing lights and the exquisitely decorated tree weren’t the only things that added to the evening’s grandeur and spectacle. The ceremonial lighting of the “Tree of Hope” represents the community’s radiating oneness and hope, which promotes harmony and coziness.
“Christmas is not a season for me, it’s a feeling,” says Jeremy Russell Go, Hotel General Manager. “In a world where hope is more vital than ever, our ceremony symbolizes a collective wish for brighter days and shared joy.”
As part of their sustainability partnership with the Philippine Institute for the Deaf this Christmas, HLC provided nearly 300 kg of used bar soap from the hotel operations for PID’s “Soap for Hope” campaign, an initiative that helps reduce hotel waste by turning used soap into something useful.
Back to the event’s highlight, this year’s tree adorned with dazzling lights, red and gold ornaments, and a star atop the tree, took center stage, exuding an ethereal glow that captivated the onlookers.
Each ornament stood not only as a magnificent design but as a metaphorical representation, with the red decors reflecting warmth, comfort, and the love shared among family and friends during the festive season, and the gold blings bringing light, wealth, and the presence of God.
Without a festive treat from its host, this magnificent occasion would fall short of its expectations. The Cafe dé Chinatown provided a great meal for the attendees. Using regional fruit, HLC’s culinary heroes worked their magic to create Sampaguita Shortcake, which features tastes exclusive to the Megaworld brand.
The Tree Lighting Ceremony at Hotel Lucky Chinatown served as more than just an extravagant show of celebration; it was a symbolic act that brought people together in the spirit of the season by serving as a reminder that, even among the twinkling lights, there is a beacon of hope.
An annual ceremony known as the Outstanding BSP Stakeholders Appreciation Ceremony honors the significant contributions made by financial industry stakeholders. Financial institutions who have exhibited outstanding support for the BSP’s mandates—which include price stability, financial stability, and secure and effective payment and settlement systems—are the recipients of the awards. In order to guarantee that more individuals have access to financial services, the ceremony also recognizes BSP’s leading financial inclusion advocacy.
“We are humbled and honored to receive this recognition,” said Clayton Lee, Executive President and Treasurer of Sterling Bank of Asia. “This award affirms our unwavering commitment and relentless efforts to support the mandates of BSP, ” Lee added.
“We at Sterling Bank of Asia remain dedicated to providing top-notch service to our customers and upholding our support to BSP mandates,” said Cecilio Paul San Pedro, President and CEO of Sterling Bank of Asia.
Credit is a useful instrument for assisting people in reaching their financial objectives. Those with credit access can make purchases today, on the basis of an agreement to pay for products and services later.
But it’s crucial to understand the difference between “bad” credit—which is unaffordable—and responsible credit, or “good” credit.
The difference between good and bad credit
Whether it’s used for purchases that improve one’s quality of life, to handle unexpected bills, or to take advantage of certain perks such as rewards points or special discounts, good credit is credit that a borrower can affordably repay.
As credit is a tool, there are cases where tools can be misused. Credit becomes bad credit when you use it to take on debt you can’t afford to repay. The longer you go without paying, the more likely you could run into fees, damage your credit score, see interest rise, and possibly face legal issues. By saddling yourself with the responsibility to take care of unaffordable outstanding debts, you run the risk of closing yourself off from better economic opportunities that credit used responsibly can unlock.
The impact of bad credit
The repercussions of taking on bad credit can be seen as a possible contributing factor to the negative stigma surrounding credit in the Philippines. In the country, the word credit is synonymous with the Tagalog word “utang” which carries notions of bad debt and financial irresponsibility.
The recent TransUnion Philippines Credit Perception Index study highlighted how negative stigma has shaped how Filipinos see credit. Findings showed that 58% of Filipinos believe that users of credit products tend to overspend while 55% do not want to be indebted.
As a result, in lieu of turning to formal financial institutions, there is a high reliance among Filipinos on family, friends, and other informal sources of borrowing. These sources include unregulated “5-6” moneylenders who issue small loans with often high interest charges over an agreed period, and “sangla-ATM” schemers who require physical ATM cards and a person’s personal identification numbers (PIN) as collateral for loans. Relying on these measures often puts borrowers at huge disadvantages that make it difficult for them to break free from their debts.
The importance of championing responsible credit use
While much work remains to be done to fully dispel the negative stigma surrounding credit in the country, more Filipinos are seeing the opportunities that come from having access to credit. Findings from the Q3 2023 TransUnion Philippines Consumer Pulse Study showed that 62% of Filipinos agreed that credit can help them access new opportunities that can lead to a better quality of life (i.e. buying a house, starting a business, financing my education, buying a car) – an increase of four percentage points from findings in Q2 2023.
Additional results from the study found that 72% of Filipinos agree that credit is widely available and easy to apply for as long as good financial management is demonstrated, an increase of four percentage points from the previous quarter. Asked whether they were comfortable owning credit accounts such as loans and credit cards, 41% of Filipinos expressed being comfortable, an increase of six percentage points from Q2 2023.
With perceptions changing and with more Filipinos growing accustomed to the ownership of credit products, the formal financial sector must continue to work together on educating Filipinos on responsible credit use and how it can pave the way towards better financial inclusion in the country.
To help promote responsible credit use, TransUnion Philippines’ credit reporting solutions help people understand and improve their credit status. Checking your credit report can help consumers stay informed of factors affecting their credit score and can help them take action to improve it. This can help people act to improve their credit standing faster.
Other data, including telco data, is a useful tool for evaluating consumers’ creditworthiness, especially for New-to-Credit (NTC) consumers who are limited by their lack of credit history. TransUnion Philippines, a global provider of risk information, helps lenders find lower-risk borrowers and offers them better terms and pricing on credit products and services by leveraging information and insights from alternative data. When TransUnion Philippines uses information for good, it means this.
Opportunities are created by credit. It is feasible for more Filipinos to achieve more in life by emphasizing the advantages of having excellent credit and persistently promoting education on the proper use of credit.
Get your TransUnion Philippines Credit Report HERE.
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