The wRap


Your World in 10 - MAy 28 2013 Edition

Convergence Strategy

1. ABS-CBN and Globe join media-telco synergy landscape



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The Ayala and Lopez groups have sealed their telco and media deal, marking the second big-ticket deal that involves the convergence of content and distribution businesses in the country. The network sharing agreement between the units of ABS-CBN and Globe Telecom would pave the way for the Lopez-led media giant to deliver content and traditional mobile services such as voice, SMS and data through the Ayala-led telco's infrastructure. With ABS-CBN and Globe on one corner of the telco-media synergy landscape, and their rivals PLDT and TV5 on the other, GMA Network, the 2nd largest media group in the country that has failed to partner with a telco, is left in the cold.


Read more on Rappler




Investigations

2. Switzerland, PH in French blacklist for foreign aids



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France has drawn up a blacklist of 17 countries that do not help investigate foreign aid fraud, banning the use of their banks to help distribute development funds. The blacklist expands on an already-established register of 8 "non-cooperative states and territories" that already includes the Philippines. It adds Switzerland, Lebanon, Panama, Costa Rica, the United Arab Emirates, Dominica, Liberia, Trinidad and Tobago, and Vanuatu. This list focuses only on transactions involving French government or its banks, and is separate from other blacklists released by Financial Action Task Force (FATF) and Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development.


Read more on Rappler




#PHvote

3. 53 more party-lists proclaimed; more coming?



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The poll body proclaimed 53 "initial" party-list winners, leaving 5 more seats vacant that could be affected by a possible Supreme Court order against the proclamations. The pro-life group Buhay led the roster of party-list winners, with 1,265,992 votes. It was the only group that garnered 3 seats in the House of Representatives. Rival groups Bayan Muna and Akbayan will also get seats in Congress. Poll chief Sixto Brillantes Jr. said the High Court may issue an order that could complicate the roster of winning groups, which the Comelec began to proclaim last week, The law allocates 58 seats for party-list representatives in Congress.


Read more on Rappler




Sports Politics

4. PH-Taiwan diplomatic row extends to basketball



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The Philippines-Taiwan saga takes another twist. Defending champion Gilas Pilipinas will not participate in the 2013 Jones Cup after coach Chot Reyes confirmed that they have been "un-invited" from the annual hoops joust in Chinese Taipei. This after the killing of a Taiwanese fisherman in disputed waters almost 2 weeks ago increased tension between Taipei and Manila. Reyes said this diplomat row doomed their hopes of defending the crown.


Read more on Rappler




Shareholder Protection

5. SEC drafts stricter rules to protect minority owners



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After several corporate governance experts raised a howl about the heavily discounted tender price offers, the corporate regulator released draft rules that aim to protect minority shareholders. The guidelines mandate owners gaining over 51% of a listed firm must offer a price that is supported by a "fairness opinion provided by an independent financial advisor or equivalent third party." Several public companies delisting from the stock market or parties acquiring a firm for backdoor listing have been offering prices that led small investors snub it. These include those offered by San Miguel Properties, Puregold owner Lucio Co. for Mariwasa SIAM Holdings shareholders, Razon group for the owners of listed hotel and casino firm Active Alliance Inc., and Macau casino operator Melco Crown to Manchester International Holdings' minority shareholders.


Read more on Rappler




Cost of Education

6. Which regions will have more colleges hiking fees?



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About 354 private colleges and universities will hike their tuition and other fees this school year 2013-2014 opens, more than the 222 schools that raised fees the previous year. The average tuition fee hike per unit approved is P37.45 or 8.5% nationwide, the lowest percentage increase in the last 10 years. The government approved the highest increases in regions II (P31.26 or 12.25%), V (P44.77 or 11.83%) and I (P34.10 or 11.12%). In the 3 regions with the most number of colleges and universities, the increases were pegged at P64.04 per unit or 6.79% in the National Capital Region (NCR), P48.81 or 7.86% in IV-A, and P44.48 or 8.86% in III.


Read more on the tuition hike here

Read more about the coming school year here




Quantitative Easing

7. PH a 'darling of emerging markets' in 2013



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The Philippines and other emerging markets continue to benefit from the quantitative easing in the US and EU this 2013 and in Japan in the coming years, a Forbes writer noted. While emerging markets are long-term investment destinations, fund managers looking for short term reasons to be invested in equities and bonds overseas find the spreads still attractive. The ample liquidity fueled by the monetary policies of US, EU, and Japan has led yield-seeking funds to Philippines, considered this year's "darling of emerging markets." Turkey has been another favorite, both for equities and bonds. Japan's Toshin Funds, however, will likely flow to Brazil, a favorite of the Japanese carry trade. Total inflows for emerging market debt this year is $22.45 billion.


Read more on Forbes

Makati image via Shutterstock




Economic Might

8. China-EU trade war over solar panels intensifies



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With the June 6 deadline for the European Union to decide whether to go ahead and impose punitive duties averaging 47% on imported Chinese solar products, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang weighed in for the first time in the trade dispute. As EU's biggest ever trade investigation enters a critical phase, Li Keqiang warned that an EU investigation into Chinese-made solar panels and telecommunications equipment would backfire by hurting European consumers. The European Commission - the EU's executive arm - argues that Chinese firms are unfairly undercutting rivals.


Read more on CNN




Rebel Arms

9. Syria arms embargo exposes deep divisions in EU



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The United Kingdom and France are forcing the EU to lift sanctions against war-torn Syria, citing negotiations on the easing of the arms embargo. The vast majority of EU states opposed the shift, but assented in order to preserve a semblance of unified policy, the Guardian reported. The dispute over how to respond to the civil war in Syria has exposed deep divisions in Europe.


Read more on Guardian




Outer Space

10. Alien minerals in moon?



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The findings of a study cast doubt on the little we knew of what the Moon is actually composed of. Minerals found in craters on the Moon may be remnants of asteroids that slammed into it and not, as long believed, the satellite's innards exposed by such impacts, a study published in the journal Nature Geoscience said. It had long been thought that meteoroids vaporize on impact with large celestial bodies. Unusual minerals like spinel and olivine found in many lunar craters, but rarely on the Moon's surface, were therefore attributed to the excavation of sub-surface lunar layers by asteroid hits.


Read more on Rappler