business

SEC reminds Normin, Caraga corporations to submit audited financial statement before June 30

June 9, 2020

THE Securities and Exchange Commission – Cagayan de Oro Extension Office (SEC-CDOEO) reminds all corporations for the submission of Audited Financial Statements (AFS) which is due this June 30, 2020. The Northern Mindanao and Caraga Regions’ Stock and Non-Stock corporations whose fiscal year ends November 30, 2019 and December 31, 2019 are obliged to submit their AFS together with the General Information Sheet (GIS) otherwise corresponding penalties will incur.       Atty. Renato V. Egypto, Director for SEC-CDOEO in a statement reminds all corporations to file and submit their reports “For all corporations, it is best to file early as now for us to avoid crowd or mass gathering. The SEC-CDOEO has been open to accept submissions since the occurrence of pandemic in the region”.       SEC-CDOEO accepts walk-in submissions from Monday to Friday (8:00AM – 5:00PM). Preemptive measures are observed in the office and thus, clients are directed to follow.       For areas with travel restrictions, clients may send their reports via courier with mailing address: SEC Bldg., Tomas Saco Del Lara Sts., Macasandig, Cagayan de Oro City.       Sending through e-mail (soft copies) is also accepted however will be deemed as partial submission considering that hard copies will complete the requirements. With this, electronic signatures, and unnotarized documents are temporarily allowed. Reports have to be submitted through reports_cdo@sec.gov.ph.       This submission is in pursuance to the Revised Corporation Code, under Sec. 177 (a) which requires all corporations to submit their annual financial statements to be audited by an independent Certified Public Accountant, however, if total assets or total liabilities of the corporation are less than Six Hundred Thousand Pesos (Php 600, 000.00), the financial statements shall be certified under oath by the Corporation’s treasurer or chief financial officer.       The reportorial requirements shall be submitted annually and within such period as may be prescribed by the Commission.       The AFS other than the consolidated financial statements, shall have the stamped “received” by the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) or its authorized banks, unless the BIR allows an alternative proof of submission for its authorized banks (e.g. bank slips).       Late filings shall have corresponding penalties as imposed by the Commission guidelines, and/or may place the Corporation under delinquent status in case of failure to submit the reportorial requirements three (3) times, consecutively or intermittently, within a period of five (5) years. The Commission shall give reasonable notice to and coordinate with the appropriate regulatory agency prior to placing under delinquent status companies under their special regulatory jurisdiction.

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Unemployed persons in R10 rise to 236,000 as of April 2020

June 9, 2020

RESULTS of the April 2020 Labor Force Survey shows that unemployment rate in the region registered at 11.1 percent. This is the highest recorded unemployment rate since 2005. Unemployment rate in January 2020 was reported at 3.2 percent while April 2019 unemployment rate posted at 5.0 percent.   In terms of magnitude, the total number of unemployed individuals as of April 2020 reached to 236,000, higher than the recorded unemployed persons in April 2019 at 121,000. In other words, there are 115,000 more individuals who are unemployed as of April 2020 as compared to the same period in the previous year which reflects the impact of CoVID-19 economic shutdown to the labor market.   The region's unemployment rate is lower than the national average of unemployment rate at 17.7 percent. The region also posted the lowest unemployment rate among the 17 regions.   Employment rate in the region fell to 88.9 percent in April 2020 from 96.8 percent in January 2020. In April 2019, employment rate registered at 95.0 percent. This translates to a decrease in the employed persons by around 400 thousand, that is, from 2.3 million employed persons in April 2019 to 1.9 million persons in April 2020.   The region, however, recorded the highest employment rate among the 17 regions of the country.

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SEC Issues cease and desist order against JOCALS688

June 4, 2020

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has issued a cease and desist order against JOCALS688 Beauty and Wellness Products Trading, Inc. to stem its fraudulent investment schemes. In a separate order issued on May 28, the Commission ordered JOCALS688 to immediately cease and desist, under pain of contempt, from soliciting investments from the public or engaging in similar activities. The SEC further prohibited JOCALS688 from transacting any business involving funds in its depository banks, and from transferring, disposing, or conveying in any manner all related assets to forestall grave damage and prejudice to all concerned and to ensure the preservation of the assets for the benefit of the investors. The cease and desist order covers the corporation’s operators, partners, directors, officers, salespersons, agents, representatives, promoters, and all persons, conduit entities and subsidiaries claiming and acting for and on its behalf. The SEC ordered JOCALS688 to stop their operations after finding they were engaged in the sale and/or offering of securities in the form of investment contracts without prior registration and the corresponding permit. “We urge everyone to stop investing to JOCALS688 especially today that the Commission has ordered cease and desist order against them already. To continuously keep our mandate which is to protect the investing public against these fraudulent schemes, please verify with the Commission first before investing your money in an entity which may not be licensed and regulated by SEC” Atty. Renato V. Egypto, SEC-CDOEO Director said in a statement. Section 8 of Republic Act No. 8799, or The Securities Regulation Code, provides that securities shall not be sold or offered for sale or distribution within the Philippines, without a registration statement duly filed with and approved by the Commission. In the case of SEC vs. CJH Development Corp., the Supreme Court ruled that the act of selling unregistered securities would necessarily operate as a fraud on investors as it deceives the investing public by making it appear that the company has authority to deal on such securities. Under Section 64 of the Securities Regulation Code, the SEC may issue a cease and desist order without the necessity of a prior hearing if, in its judgment, an act or practice, unless restrained, will operate as a fraud on investors or is otherwise likely to cause grave or irreparable injury or prejudice to the investing public. Prior to issuing the cease and desist orders, the SEC has advised the public to avoid or stop placing their hard-earned money in JOCALS688. Atty. Egypto added that “We have done all sorts of information dissemination campaigns to inform and caution the public about JOCALS688 over radio interviews, sending emails directly to local officials and, releasing of information through our partners in the government and the media networks particularly about the issuance of Advisory against the said entity before.”  JOCALS688 registered as a corporation on October 9, 2019 to engage in the sale, distribution, marketing and trading of goods, commodities and merchandise such as beauty and wellness products, coffee, juice and herbal products. The company headquartered in Zamboanga del Sur named Joshua A. Calderon, Echochen M. Calderon, Noemie C. Ponce, Hanz R. Paler and Nino S. Agad-ad as directors in its articles of incorporation. In a certificate of incorporation issued to JOCALS688 provides that the corporation “shall not solicit, accept or take investments/ placements from the public neither shall it issue investment contracts.” The Enforcement and Investor Protection Department (EIPD), however, found that JOCALS688 enticed members to deposit a minimum of P10,000 to earn P13,000 after a month. Alternatively, one could become a member by purchasing a package of products for P3,800.00. Members could earn by selling the products. However, they could supposedly receive bigger returns by simply recruiting more people into the scheme. The SEC found the scheme to have satisfied all the elements of an investment contract. In this light, JOCALS688 must have filed a registration statement with the Commission and applied for a secondary license.  “Thus, in the absence of a secondary license, JOCALS688 should be restrained from offering or selling securities in the form of investment contracts,” the SEC concluded. The Commission also pointed out that the capitalization of JOCALS688 only amounted to P1 million while it promised investors a guaranteed 37% monthly income. “Clearly, JOCALS688's business model and capitalization cannot sustain the promised returns of investment, especially if no new investors will come in,” the SEC noted. “Pay-outs for investors are financed from investments of new recruits/ investors. This is a fraudulent scheme which will likely cause grave or irreparable injury or prejudice to the investing public.” The SEC earlier issued similar cease and desist orders against CROWD1 Asia Pacific, Inc., Lion City Finance Group, Inc. and Payasian Pte. Ltd. Corporation for engaging in unauthorized investment schemes.

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DSWD taps PayMaya for distribution of AICS assistance

June 4, 2020

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) has partnered with e-wallet application, PayMaya, to provide cashless distribution of financial aid to clients of the Assistance to Individuals in Crisis Situation (AICS).    Under the AICS program, qualified indigent, marginalized, poor, or disadvantaged individuals or families may avail of any medical, educational, burial, or transportation assistance as immediate aid or safety net to help them recover from any crisis situation.    Through the partnership, clients availing of AICS can easily encash their cash aid from any of the 30,000 Smart Padala branches nationwide through their PayMaya accounts.    They may also use the funds in their accounts to pay for bills, groceries, or other daily essentials, purchase airtime load, or send money to other PayMaya users through the PayMaya app.    Last month, DSWD also tapped PayMaya as one of the featured payment methods in the ReliefAgad app. Beneficiaries of the Social Amelioration Program (SAP) may choose to receive their cash aid through their respective PayMaya accounts.    The Department will continue to find innovative, safer, and convenient ways to improve its cash disbursement mechanisms to provide immediate assistance to Filipinos during the public health crisis. 

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2GO shifts gears to reunite OFWs with their families

May 30, 2020

2GO Group Inc shifts to higher gear its passengers’ service operations to support government’s directive to speed up the homecoming of over 24,000 overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) stranded in Metro Manila due to the coronavirus pandemic.  The group, which operates the Philippines’ largest integrated supply chain, said it is “ready, willing, and capable”’ of safely transporting the locally stranded OFWs and other individuals to the Visayas and Mindanao regions. In fact, 2GO has been supporting the Balik Probinsiya program of the government since it started.  Last May 24, two of its vessels -- the M/V St. Therese of Child Jesus and the M/V St.  Leo the Great -- left Manila with 1000 repatriated Filipinos on board who were finally on their way home after being held up in the capital while undergoing the mandatory 14-day quarantine since April.  2GO’s fleet of passenger ships has made numerous hassle-free trips between Manila to its 12 service ports in Visayas and Mindanao ranging from Bacolod down to Zamboanga.   To ensure safety and wellness of its passengers and crew, 2GO management has set in place strict health and sanitation protocols that are being enforced to the letter. New sea travel guidelines are also being implemented such as social distancing in the sleeping and dining areas, regular temperature checks and less contact with crew throughout the trip.  2GO can accommodate and bring home over 6000 individuals for this week’s sailings to Bacolod, Cebu, Iloilo, Cagayan De Oro, Dumaguete, Ozamis, Iligan, Zamboanga and Nasipit.  All OFWs who wish to get on board must show proof that they have undergone the required quarantine and were given a clean bill of health by concerned authorities. Other required documents are ID cards showing proof of residence, passport with arrival stamp, and Bureau of Quarantine certificate. The OFWs can either coordinate with their respective manning agencies, or book directly with 2GO regarding their trip through email address bayanihan@2go.com.ph, or call 09065726255 and 095a16143362.  Passengers are encouraged to show up for boarding at least four hours before departure.  “We are proud to be a partner in all endeavors of the government to lift the people’s quality of life through efficient and affordable public service, notably in the transport sector. We are committed to delivering seamless movements of people and commerce at globally competitive levels”, said 2GO shipping head Dan Fernan.    

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DOTr, LTFRB tap PayMaya for cashless payments, additional livelihood of PUV drivers

May 29, 2020

 The Department of Transportation (DOTr) and the Land Transportation Franchising Regulatory Board (LTFRB) have tapped digital financial services leader PayMaya to provide additional livelihood opportunities to drivers as well as access to cashless payment options to drivers and operators of Public Utility Vehicles (PUVs) as quarantine restrictions begin to ease in some parts of the country.  PayMaya is offering various taxi and transport operators and their drivers QR scan-to-pay capabilities via its mobile app, which will also give them access to a digital financial account that they can use for everyday transactions such as bills payments, airtime load reloading, and sending money to friends and family. As transportation services resume in areas under General Community Quarantine (GCQ),  the LTFRB recently issued guidelines mandating taxis and TNVS to adopt cashless payments such as PayMaya as a measure to help curb the further spread of COVID-19. “Cashless payments particularly in taxis and TNVS vehicles is part of our new norm, and we are glad that our drivers and operators have easy and convenient options such as PayMaya so that they can quickly implement this solution for the safety and benefit of their riders,” added LTFRB Chairman Martin Delgra III. Soon, drivers and transport operators may also receive contactless payments through credit, debit, and prepaid cards via tap-to-pay technology through the other digital payment solutions of PayMaya. Operators may also utilize PayMaya’s PayOut disbursement solution to easily distribute salaries and other incentives through their drivers’ PayMaya accounts.  In the past, PayMaya has also partnered with bus and taxi companies in Metro Manila and also in other areas such as Baguio and Cebu, such as in enabling transportation facilities such as the Araneta Bus Port in helping them accept cashless payments through credit and debit cards as well as via PayMaya QR.  Alternative livelihood opportunities for faster recovery  On top of helping drivers accept cashless payments, PayMaya will also soon enable them with additional livelihood options–such as offering airtime load purchases, bills payment, and even remittances if they also operate a sari-sari store or any physical store–through other upcoming products and services. “In the ‘new normal’, we must help everyone adapt to new and safer ways to lead our lives, and that includes the transportation industry. PayMaya is proud to support the government and transport operators not just in helping them accept contactless payments, but to chart the path towards their full recovery as well,” said PayMaya Founder and CEO Orlando B. Vea.  As the entire country conforms to the changes caused by the COVID-19 crisis across various sectors aside from transportation, digital and contactless payments will become not just a must but a strategic advantage for businesses in order to quickly recover. To know more about PayMaya's products and services for businesses and merchants, visit http://enterprise.paymaya.com.  PayMaya is the only end-to-end digital payments ecosystem enabler in the Philippines with platforms and services that cuts across consumers, merchants, and government. Aside from providing the payments acceptance for the largest e-Commerce, food, retail and gas merchants in the Philippines, PayMaya is enabling national and social services agencies as well as local government units with digital payments and disbursement services.   Through its PayMaya app and wallet, it is providing millions of Filipinos with the fastest way to own a financial account with over 40,000 Add Money touchpoints nationwide, more than double the total number of traditional bank branches in the Philippines combined.   Its Smart Padala by PayMaya network of over 30,000 partner agents nationwide serves as last mile digital financial hubs in communities, providing the unbanked and underserved with access to services.

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