Jump to content


Root Admin
  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won


wizard last won the day on April 28 2020

wizard had the most liked content!

Community Reputation

1,092 Excellent

1 Follower

About wizard

  • Rank

Recent Profile Visitors

4,468 profile views
  1. Cannot answer your question as to why or why not... but I guess the interest in travel destinations have slowed down now that almost nobody will travel.
  2. Guess we will have to wait and see. Why are you interessted in buying? I know of a couple of places that have already been sold or closed.
  3. wizard

    Buying a House

    If you were going to by a property to build a house in the near future where would you want to buy the property in respect of price / quality. Personal requirement would just be access to a larger city within 20 minutes (without traffic 😛 ) and a beach.
  4. Foreign Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr makes the suggestion after National Security Adviser Hermogenes Esperon Jr raised security concerns over the surge in the number of Chinese working in the Philippines ANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte will consider the suggestion of Foreign Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr to stop granting foreigners visas upon arrival, Malacañang said on Thursday, August 1. "The President will consider the proposal of the Secretary and if we don't hear anything from him, that means that will be the policy of the government," said Presidential Spokesman Salvador Panelo on Thursday, August 1 during a news conference. Locsin made the suggestion through a tweet on Wednesday, July 31, after National Security Advisor Hermogenes Esperson Jr voiced concern over the influx of Chinese working in the Philippines. "We need to put an end to visas upon arrival; all visas should be issued by consular offices after vetting. We must take extra care in outsourcing any part of the visa application process, picking only the most reputable worldwide," Locsin said. Esperon earlier said he saw the large number of Chinese coming to work in the country, many of them illegally, as a threat. He added that there was a need to be "cautious" when foreigners come in, regardless of nationality, "and their intent is not clear." Panelo on Thursday also echoed the concerns of Esperon when asked if the Palace also saw Chinese workers as a security threat. "Ang importante diyan, paano nakakapasok 'yan nang hindi natin nalalaman.'Yan ang mas delikado diyan (What's important is, how do they enter without us knowing? That's more dangerous)," said Panelo. But the spokesman said Chinese nationals who are in the country illegally can just be "expelled" by the government for violating immigration laws. The Duterte administration has tried to cultivate warm ties with China in order to reap economic rewards, even if surveys consistently show that many Filipinos trust China the least among nations. Thousands of Chinese workers are employed by Philippine Online Gambling Operations (POGOs) which are supposed to be regulated by the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (Pagcor). (READ: How China’s online gambling addiction is reshaping Manila) Insiders estimated that there are "easily" around 100,000 to 250,000 Chinese employed in POGOs. Senator Joel Villanueva had accused Pagcor of not properly implementing regulations, leading to a "loss in government income and opportunities for Filipinos." There have been cases when Chinese workers who come to work in the Philippines are poor and exploited by their employers. They are also exposed to racism amid tensions between China and the Philippines. source
  5. https://www.sunstar.com.ph/article/1816195/Pampanga/Local-News/5-Angeles-City-bars-with-no-business-permits-closed
  6. MANILA – Ride-hailing firm Grab Philippines said Monday it updated its policy to include a P50 fee for cancellations and no-shows to curb “unreasonable" behavior. The penalty will apply to passengers who terminate a ride 5 minutes after getting a driver and for passengers who fail to show up at the pick-up points within 5 minutes upon arrival of their GrabCar booking. The window is shorter at 3 minutes for GrabShare. Cancellation fees are added to the next booking fee if the passenger is paying in cash, Grab said. Passenger accounts will be temporarily suspended for 24 hours if they cancel a ride twice in an hour, thrice in a day or 5 times within a week, the ride-hailing company said. Drivers will also be penalized for cancelling passenger bookings without proper reason and for being selective of passenger destinations, the statement said. Drivers may also be “locked out of the platform” if they excessively ignore or cancel requests. Passengers automatically get 30 rewards points if a driver cancels a ride, while a “tipping feature” was also rolled out allowing passengers to reward their drivers. “Our intention in implementing this new policy is to create a better ride-hailing ecosystem, where both passengers and drivers practice the responsible use of the Grab platform,” Grab president Brian Cu said. However, the P50 cancellation and no-show fees will not be imposed if the driver is canceled within 5 minutes, if the driver is not moving towards the pick-up point, if the driver takes 15 minutes longer than the estimated time of arrival, and if the driver indicates he has arrived when he has not, Grab said. The platform said it was willing to refund wrongly charged fees within 48 hours. Grab has notified the Land Transportation and Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) about it’s new cancellation policy. source
  7. Thought I would share a nice youtube find
  8. Angeles City, Pampanga continues to be a hotbed of creeps. A 41-year-old Australian man has been arrested by authorities after he was caught in one of the city’s hotels with four women — including two who are underage — he allegedly paid to have sex with him, ABS-CBN News reported yesterday. The operation was done by the National Bureau of Investigation and Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency who also caught the suspect and the women doing drugs. Two of the women inside the hotel room with the man are aged 16 and 17 years old. Authorities also found evidence in the hotel room proving the man is a pedophile but the report did not detail what these were. The Australian had also previously been jailed for abusing an underage girl. According to the victims, they were offered PHP4,000 (US$74.98) to PHP5,00 (US$93.73) in exchange for sex. Despite all this, the man still denied the accusations. He will be charged for violating the Expanded Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act of 2012 and Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002. Incidents like this are common in Angeles, a city about 80 kilometers away from Manila that is infamous for its red light district, which first sprouted to cater to American soldiers living in the nearby Clark Air Base. https://coconuts.co/manila/news/authorities-arrest-australian-pedophile-caught-4-women-angeles-pampanga/
  9. THE city government of Angeles led by Mayor Edgardo Pamintuan donated relief goods to the residents of the City of Balanga and municipality of Hermosa in the province of Bataan, which were devastated by last week’s heavy downpour. Pamintuan instructed the city’s disaster and emergency response team to immediately extend the aid last Wednesday, July 25. The City Social Welfare and Development Office (CSWDO) and the Angeles City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (ACDRRMO) jointly spearheaded the said relief operation. A total of 500 packed goods are to be distributed to the victims of the calamity in the province of Bataan which was put under the state of calamity last Sunday after Typhoon Josie caused heavy rains and flash floods. CSWDO head Joy Duaso assured that the city government will readily offer its assistance to their city. “They can expect that the Local Government of Angeles will not turn a blind eye. This aid is a way of giving back and letting them know that we are here for them in times of need,” said Duaso. Pamintuan extended his support to the city of Balanga, recalling the outpouring of aid from neighboring provinces when Mt. Pinatubo erupted in the early 90s. He was then seated as vice-mayor of Angeles City. “My sympathy goes to the victims of the typhoon. Rest assured that we will prioritize the extension of aid, as well as hope, to our fellow men in Bataan, in perpetual gratitude to their kindness in our unfortunate moments,” the city mayor said. The ACDRRMO was tasked to supervise the transport of the goods, while the local government will remain to be in contact with its neighboring province for further support and assistance. https://www.sunstar.com.ph/article/1754811/Pampanga/Local-News/Angeles-City-helps-Bataan-flood-victims
  10. Almost two years after China pledged $24 billion in investment to the Philippines, barely any projects have materialized, prompting deepening concerns that President Rodrigo Duterte has undermined the country’s sovereignty with little to show in return. Of the 27 deals signed between China and the Philippines during Duterte’s visit to Beijing in October 2016, China originally agreed to provide $9 billion in soft loans, including a $3 billion credit line with the Bank of China, with a further $15 billion worth of direct investments from Chinese firms in railway, port, energy and mining projects. It didn’t specify a timeline. Since then, the Philippines has completed only one loan agreement with China worth $73 million to fund an irrigation project north of the capital, Manila, according to Economic Planning Secretary Ernesto Pernia. Two bridges in Manila to be funded with Chinese grants worth up to $75 million were inaugurated last week. The process of securing loans from China “seems to be moving slower” compared to getting assistance from other countries such as Japan, Pernia said at a briefing earlier this month. Duterte has repeatedly touted China’s financial help as a key reason for pivoting away from the U.S. and Europe, which he says haven’t produced material gains for the Philippines. Yet while Beijing remains the Philippines largest trading partner, when it comes to foreign direct investment, China is outranked by Japan, the U.S., the Netherlands, South Korea and Singapore. s the Philippines’ only treaty ally, the U.S. also remains a key security partner, providing crucial assistance to the country’s armed forces last year as they struggled to defeat hundreds of Muslim militants who had laid siege to the city of Marawi. China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs disputed the assertion that it had not followed through on its investment commitments in the Philippines, pointing to the bridge and irrigation projects. “China-Philippines relations are continuously strengthening and deepening,” it said in an emailed statement. “China attaches great importance to friendly cooperation with the Philippines and enthusiastically supports President Duterte’s ’Major Construction, Strong Construction’ plan.” Duterte’s visit to Beijing in 2016 served as a turning point for his administration, reinforcing his “separation” from the U.S. and cementing his shift toward China. His critics have accused him of failing to respond forcefully after Beijing landed bomber aircraft on territory claimed by the Philippines and asserted its presence at Sandy Cay in the Spratly Island chain. “Under Duterte, the Philippines has forward deployed its geopolitical concessions,” Richard Heydarian, non-resident fellow at ADR-Stratbase Institute, a think-tank, said in an interview. “We have been used by China.” Territorial Dispute China’s popularity has suffered in the Philippines, with net trust in the country plummeting to its lowest since April 2016, the month before Duterte was elected president, according to a Social Weather Stations survey of 1,200 voters conducted over the last weekend in June. Almost nine in 10 said they wanted the Philippines to assert its claims against China in the South China Sea. For Alvin A. Camba, a doctoral candidate at Johns Hopkins University, timing isn’t the issue. The real measure is the annual foreign direct investment from China and Hong Kong, which has already reached $800 million, nearly two-thirds of what it was during the previous administration, Camba said. “There shouldn’t be any expectations for these deal to be completed, or to be close to completion,” Camba, who has written extensively on Chinese investment in the Philippines, said in an email. "Opening the economy to Chinese FDI was the correct move.” Still, many of the biggest deals don’t seem to be happening at all. Greenergy Development Corp., which is based in Mindanao, signed an agreement to develop a $1 billion, 300-megawatt hydropower plant with Power China in October 2016. When China Power asked for the initial project deadline to be extended several times through January last year, Cerael Donggay, chief executive of Greenergy, agreed. “The last extension was in February 2017 and still nothing happened, so we terminated the agreement,” Donggay said in a phone interview, adding that his company was now in talks with a Hong Kong-based company to try to complete the project. One of the Philippines largest nickel miners, Global Ferronickel, signed an agreement with Baiyin Nonferrous Group in October 2016 to explore the construction of a stainless steel plant in the Philippines for up to $700 million. “It was put on hold,” Global Ferronickel president Dante Bravo said in an interview, because the government was yet to lift an executive order banning new mining projects. “It was exploratory. We have to convince them that it’s really viable,” Bravo said. Another agreement signed in October 2016 was a $780 million proposal to raise three islands from a waterlogged area of Davao, Duterte’s hometown. That was canceled in July last year after the city’s mayor and presidential daughter, Sara Duterte-Carpio, said a review of the project found that it was not commercially viable. “After the wave of euphoria which greeted those announcements in 2016, we realize now that those Chinese investment claims were hugely inflated,” said the ADR-Stratbase Institute’s Heydarian. “Looking forward, I expect Japan, the U.S. and other partners in Europe to remain the main suppliers of foreign investment to the Philippines.” https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-07-25/china-s-24-billion-promise-to-duterte-still-hasn-t-materialized?cmpid=socialflow-facebook-business&utm_medium=social&utm_content=business&utm_source=facebook&utm_campaign=socialflow-organic
  11. By August 2018, only electric tricycles will be allowed to ferry passengers in Boracay as part of the Malay municipal government's bid to promote environment-friendly public transportation MANILA, Philippines – Only electric passenger tricyles (e-tricycles) should be seen plying the streets of Boracay by August this year, when the Malay town government in Aklan enforces the phaseout of motorized public tricycles in the island. Former Malay town council member Rowen Aguirre, Executive Assistant for Boracay Affairs, said the move aims not only to improve the convenience and reliability of the island's main mode of transportation but also to curb the effects of climate change. (WATCH: Why it's time to act on climate change) According to Aguirre, motorized tricycles were initially introduced to the island as a temporary mode of transportation. The local government searched for possible replacements for some time but was unsuccessful in doing so, he said. When electric vehicles became popular in the early 2000s, Malay town officials considered e-tricycles as way to go for the island. Aguirre and other local officials have pushed for the shift to e-tricycles, but the implementation of the e-tricycle policy proved to be a continuous struggle. Several administrations approved the policy but it was never fully implemented due to resistance of a number of tricycle operators, and the difficult search for e-tricycle manufacturers with reliable aftersales service. Why the resistance? Rose Martin, an operator of two units of tricycles, said she was only shifting to e-tricycles because the government has mandated it. She believed that the shift will become more inefficient and expensive on the operator's part, and that e-tricycles will not put a dent on efforts to ease the effects of climate change since vehicles running on fossil fuel are still allowed on the island. "They are only replacing passenger tricycles, but that does not really do much for the environment because the trucks, the cargo tricycles, and other motorized vehicles of resorts and delivery companies remain in operation on the island. We tricycle owners are then forced to take out loans just to be able to purchase e-tricycles that are very costly, to allow us to continue operations." Martin has no option but to replace her tricycles. She is carefully weighing brand options based on reviews and feedback she gathered from e-tricycle operators. Some brands offer a very low to no down payment scheme, while other terms of payment extend to 3 years. Prior to the closure, Martin earned at least P2,500 from each of her tricycle units. However, during her first few years operating two e-tricycles, remittance from her drivers only covered the vehicles' daily amortization and electricity bills. Despite such feedback from operators, Aguirre believed the island's shift to e-tricycles will ensure a more tourist-friendly, environment-friendly, and people-friendly mode of local transportation. “There are no emissions and no noise pollution. I believe – initially – people, especially operators, are not really agreeable with the shift. They do not want to shift to something they are not comfortable with. As local government, it is imperative [for] us to initiate the plans and force people to comply by exercising political will because it is the right thing to do.” Aguirre said. “Once we finish the e-tricycle program, we will also focus on addressing issues with the other types of vehicles on the island,” he said. Climate change challenge Aguirre is aware that using climate change to compel people to support the shift to e-tricycles will not be enough, since many are still not fully aware of the issue and is not a priority of locals. (READ: Climate Change: Why PH should care) On a scale of one to 10 with 10 being the highest, Aguirre rates Boracay residents' awareness on climate change a 5. Most are concerned with basic needs especially during the island's closure, so climate change has a low rank among the people’s list of priorities, he said. (READ: Boracay now closed) Still, even Boracay is not spared from the impacts of climate change. It is affected with sea level rise, which is evident especially in White Beach. (READ: Boracay: From pristine island to fragile paradise) He said given this challenge, the Malay government is convincing tricycle operators to shift to e-tricycles as part of a holistic solution to save the environment. “In our capability as the local government, we do our best to introduce the concept and solutions to climate change through programs such as the ban of two-stroke motorcycles, the ban on single-use plastics, the strict implementation [of] emission testing on an annual basis for island vehicles, and the ban on burning of trash," Aguirre said. – Rappler.com
  12. MANILA, Philippines — Landing International Development Ltd., a Hong Kong listed casino company, is making its foray in the Philippines. The company will pour in $1.5 billion into its planned integrated casino resort dubbed as Nayon Landing, which will rise on a 9.5-hectare property inside the 100-hectare Entertainment City. In a disclosure to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange late Wednesday. Landing said it plans to open its integrated casino resort early 2022. It hopes to break ground on Aug. 7 after getting a provisional license from the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. (Pagcor). The whole resort will feature a Filipino cultural theme park, an indoor waterpark, an indoor movie-based theme park, a convention center, luxury hotels, retail and dining areas, and other commercial and entertainment facilities. The casino will be another attraction of the integrated resort with a gross floor area of approximately 28,000 square meters with a ‘‘sky casino’’ theme to offer its premium guests an exquisite gaming experience. A host of different gaming options will be available such as the Baccarat, Blackjack, Pontoon, Roulette, Casino War, Craps, Stud Poker, Big & Small, Money Wheel, Pai-Gow, Pula at Puti, slot machines, electronic gaming machines and Poker. Landing will fund the $1.5 billion investment through internal resources or debt financing . “The momentous and symbolic occasion will mark the first step in the development of the integrated resort. The ceremony will celebrate a key milestone in the company’s history as it continues to strive toward becoming one of the global leaders in the tourism, leisure and entertainment industry,” said Landing International chairman and executive director Yang Zhihui. Yang said the investment in the Philippines “is an ideal opportunity” for the company to expand its footprint into Southeast Asia as it strives to become a leading integrated casino resort operator in the region. Landing operates the Jeju Shinhwa World casino resort in Jeju, South Korea. “NayonLanding will be able to leverage on the growing brand equity in Jeju Shinhwa World to attract more Koreans and tourists in the region to visit the Philippines,” Yang said. The grant of a license to Landing comes just months after President Duterte imposed a nationwide ban on the issuance of new casino licenses on concerns that there are already too many casinos in the country. Pagcor chairman Andrea Domingo announced the ban during the 2018 International Casino Exhibition London, a global gaming technology event, last February. Aside from the ban, the project also raised questions on the land deal. Landing has a land lease agreement with the Nayong Pilipino Foundation for the 9.5-hectare property but industry sources said the Commission on Audit (COA) earlier questioned the deal. The company, however, has a legally binding contract for the land, according to GGRAsia. Read more at https://www.philstar.com/business/2018/07/27/1837028/hong-kong-firm-eyes-15-billion-resort-philippines#X8uKrHZMHFWc2vOK.99
  13. A Dutch pedophile that had been residing in Hua Hin as both a music teacher and property agent was sentenced to 22 years in a Thai jail for the sexual abuse of local boys under 15, reported De Telegraaf. In November of last year, serial pedophile Reinhold Klunder, 51, was arrested at his home in his Hua Hin home where a ten-year-old boy was found on the property and another arrived during the arrest. He often invited local boys over to swim in his pool and feed them, later luring them into sex and taping the abuse sessions to share with his online pedophile community. Police began investigating the man after a tip from police in the Netherlands, where Klunder was also wanted for sexual abuse. During the investigation, neighbors said that they saw many young boys come and go from Klunder’s home. Police took stained bed linen, computers, cell phones, tablets, memory cards and other memory storage devices from his home for evidence. The man admitted his guilt after the arrest.
  14. Executive Summary The Philippines has a high vulnerability to natural hazards which are attributed to the nation’s geographic position in Southeast Asia. Natural disasters such as typhoons, earthquakes, floods, volcanic eruptions, landslides, and fires affect the country. Volcanic eruptions and tsunamis are related to the continental plate activity around “the Ring of Fire”. Because it is one of the most geologically active areas, it is nicknamed “The Ring of Fire”. This is a circular arm of active volcanoes that surrounds the Pacific Ocean basin. This area in the Pacific Ocean covers nearly 25,000 miles from the southern tip of South America, to the west coast of North America, across the Bering Strait, through Japan, and into New Zealand. In 2013, Typhoon Haiyan (also known as Typhoon Yolanda), one of the deadliest disasters to strike the Philippines, affected 26 million people and claimed at least 8,000 lives. Rising sea levels are also a direct threat to approximately 70 percent of the Philippine population, which has forced many to relocate as a result. In addition, climate change has also increased the severity and frequency of natural disasters in the country. The agricultural tradition and rapid development in some areas of the country leave large portions of the population and the economy vulnerable to natural hazards. Apart from the metropolitan regions, the agricultural workers and fishermen are the most affected population by natural disasters. Approximately one-third of the Philippines total population are employed in the agriculture sector and natural disasters pose significant threats to this population’s food security and sources of income. The Philippine Government, International Non-government Organizations (INGOs) and local NGOs are all making attempts to address the impact of disasters and climate change at various levels. The Philippine Government has made significant strides in the implementation of disaster risk reduction (DRR) planning and activities through the development of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) which acts as the lead agency for DRR in the Philippines. The disaster focal points are the NDRRMC and the Office of Civil Defence (OCD). The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) is responsible for leading immediate disaster relief efforts. The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) is a primary responder in disasters and have been deployed frequently to several disaster relief operations in the country in recent years. The Philippines has endured disasters that involve national and international assistance. There is increased awareness on disaster risk reduction in the Philippines, but proper integration with climate change adaptation and sustainable development policies can be improved. Disaster risk reduction management and climate change adaptation have been integrated in various plans and framework; however, multiple plans can be overwhelming for local government units. The Philippine Government has learned from Typhoon Haiyan that risk communication is essential and through the NDRRMC has issued very specific warnings regarding potential storm impacts as a result. https://reliefweb.int/sites/reliefweb.int/files/resources/Philippines_2018-0318.pdf source
  15. Our readers love Boracay, an island in the Philippines that has the kind of powdery white beaches and see-your-feet-clear water that inspires island cliches. It topped our Readers' Choice Awards list of best islands in the world in 2017. Unfortunately, the tiny stretch of sand—just under four square miles—is a victim of its own growing popularity. With 2.1 million tourists arriving in 2017 alone (spending more than $1 billion), Boracay now has to contend with environ­mental degradation, traffic congestion, insufficient solid waste management, illegal construction, property disputes, illegal fishing...to name a few. In February, Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte called the island a “cesspool.” “I’ll give you six months," he told Environment Secretary Roy Cimatu. "Clean the goddamn thing.” To future-proof Boracay’s natural beauty, the government has announced an unprecedented six-month closure of the island, set to begin next month and last through September, though an end date hasn't yet been confirmed. So, how do you actually "close" an island? Although residents will be allowed to come and go, both local and foreign tourists will be blocked at the mainland ferry port starting April 26. The nearby airports of Caticlan and Kalibo will continue operating as they are located on the mainland, but Philippine Airlines and Cebu Pacific Air have both confirmed they will offer refunds and rebooking. However, they've held back details of the refund policy while awaiting the government’s clarification on the closure. A cabinet meeting scheduled for April 5 should bring final word. The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), Departments of the Interior and Tourism, and local authorities are working together to decide how exactly to the implement the temporary ban on Boracay tourism. A few major goals of the closure are clear, and involve constructing a sewer system, clearing the famous beaches of illegal structures, and inspecting legal buildings and businesses to make sure they're abiding by construction and environmental regulations. Prior to the announcement, Boracay was already making headlines when the government approved the approval of a 250-room, $500 million hotel-casino on the already stressed island. The DENR has only been researching Boracay’s ecosystem and tourism’s impact on it for a decade, and new research this year is expected to help to determine the island’s “carrying capacity,” or the maximum number of people the island and its infrastructure can support, all at once. This isn't the first time a country has taken drastic measures to preserve the environment of a beloved island. In 2004, the Malaysian government abruptly closed all hotels on Sipadan, known for having some of the best scuba diving in the world. Night diving was banned and, by 2013, the government had further limited tourism to only 120 daily visitor permits. Farther away, the Pacific island nation of Palau began requiring visitors to sign an eco-pledge in December, stamped into their passports as part of the visa, where they promised to act in an environmentally responsible way during their stay. While a six-month tourist ban for Boracay may mean hundreds of thousands of interrupted or canceled airline, hotel, and activity plans and an untold amount of lost revenue for local businesses, the alternative—running Boracay into the ground until travelers eventually move on to greener (or, rather, cleaner) destinations—isn't worth considering. source
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.