IT seems the Manuel V. Pangilinan (MVP) group has overlooked its obligation to pay P200,000 to the Economic Journalists Association of the Philippines (Ejap) for the organization’s Christmas event last year and its sportsfest this year.
This obligation became a focal point of a somewhat heated discussion among staid business and financial writers in the country, who usually compare Pangilinan with San Miguel Corp. (SMC) President Ramon S. Ang. Both honchos have become known in business circles as “frenemies”.
Those who support Ang point out that a matter like an unpaid obligation to a media organization does not happen under the watchful eyes of those who formerly reported on the diversified conglomerate. They say it would be a no-no for SMC to let such “financial transgressions” happen.
Those who are on Pangilinan’s side, on the other hand, say the obligation was just overlooked. After all, they add, the total support he gave to the Ejap amounted to P400,000. Thus, it can be said the MVP group has fulfilled half of its financial commitment.
If nothing else, this obligation offers an interesting subtext to the professional rivalry between Pangilinan and Ang. This rivalry has resulted in much speculation as to who between the two men gets to bag a big government contract, follows the other’s business pursuits, and even gets to pirate a noted infrastructure leader.
Pangilinan and Ang have been dropping enough clues about their future projects that, within the Ejap, the battle between them has boiled down to one who must win and one whose win is a must.
Empowering the ‘little guys’
A LITTLE over a week ago, we wrote about a local company that is about to unveil a fully scalable, end-to-end payment, logistics and supply-chain platform that would remove the guesswork out of setting up or expanding a business.
Well, we can now reveal that that company is LBC Express, which has just launched a groundbreaking service suite called LBC 360, which offers, among others, a five-minute entry into the world of cybershopping.
LBC 360 has caused so much excitement among micro, small and medium enterprises; entrepren.eurs; and even large companies, as they can now “borrow” the full capabilities and resources of LBC for the benefit of their business. This makes it quite easy for “the little guys” to go big, “the big guys” to go massive and “the massive guys” to go global. LBC 360 has virtually made supply-chain (and demand-access) difficulties virtually obsolete.
From just sending parcels, LBC has now evolved into a padama for businesses, as the company changes the business game by literally outsourcing its capabilities to businesses for their order-inventory management, logistical solutions, delivery and branch solutions, and even payment solutions.
“That’s always been our long-term objective, and we never lost sight of that: We’re moving Lives, Businesses [and] Communities—and, ultimately, the nation,” said Javy Mantecon, LBC’s chief marketing officer.
Trouble at One-Stop Shop
MANOLITA CALIX, the head of the Records Composite Team (RCT) of the One-Stop Shop Interagency Tax Credit and Duty Drawback Center (OSS Center), has sought an order for the preventive suspension of OSS Center chief Sheila Castaloni after the latter removed the former from her post and took control of the center’s records and files.
Calix has filed before the Civil Service Commission (CSC) a complaint, dated November 18, that accused Castaloni of being “prejudicial to [civil] service, gross misconduct, and inefficiency and incompetence in the performance of official duties.”
Calix said Castaloni issued on November 6 an office order removing her as RCT chief, in order to control the office records and files in anticipation of what was perceived as administrative and criminal charges that Castaloni would face from exporters, OSS Center workers and other stakeholders.
Representatives from the Department of Finance (DOF), the Bureau of Internal Revenue, the Bureau of Customs and the Board of Investments (BOI) comprise the RCT, whose job is to secure the OSS Center’s records and files, including tax-credit-certificate (TCC) dockets, mainly to prevent the recurrence of the P5.2-billion tax-credit scam of the late 1990s.
The OSS Center is a DOF-attached agency that which processes TCCs, or tax refunds, for BOI-registered export firms.
For Calix, Castaloni appeared wary of the complaints that exporters would file against her in connection with an October 10 office order that required all exporters to submit additional documentary evidence before they could get their multimillion-peso claims for tax refunds.
Image credits: Benjo Laygo