Monday, June 24, 2019

Citi Philippines Supports the Philippine Paralympic Committee and Filipino Para-athletes in LAKAD PARA ATLETA

The spirit of diversity and inclusion brings together Citi Philippines and the Philippine Paralympic Committee (PPC) for the inaugural “LAKAD PARA ATLETA”, a walk to support the country’s Paralympic movement, held at the University of the Philippines College of Science Oval at UP Diliman, Quezon City.

This event aims to raise awareness and funds to benefit the country’s Para athletes, especially as they prepare to compete in the upcoming 10th ASEAN Para Games, to be held at the New Clark City Sports Complex in January 2020.  Citi formalized a partnership with the Philippine Paralympic Committee in December of last year, as part of a global agreement between Citi and the International Paralympic Committee (IPC). The international agreement supports 18 National Paralympic Committees (NPCs) in the lead up to the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games. Through the partnership, Citi will help generate excitement and national pride around the extraordinary accomplishments of the country’s para-athletes. In the Philippines, Citi is proudly sponsoring two of the country’s top Para athletes: Adeline Dumapong-Ancheta (power lifting) and Jerrold Mangliwan (wheelchair racing.)

The Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) is also supporting the PPC by holding a series of sports activities for an “Olympic Day” together with the country’s top athletes from the Philippine Olympians Association (POA).

PPC President Michael Barredo and Citi Philippines CEO Aftab Ahmed walked together during the last leg of an Olympic torch relay, which marked the opening of the Lakad Para Atleta walk. In a show of unity, both Para athletes from the PPC and athletes from the POA participated in both the relay and the walk together. More than 2,000 participants joined the walk, including over 800 employees from Citi Philippines.

“Citi Philippines is excited about the opportunity to partner with the PPC and to jointly work on the common goal of greater inclusion in sports. We are thrilled to sponsor the inaugural ‘Lakad Para Atleta’. Our 800 Citi volunteers present today feel honored to be participating side-by-side with the nation’s incredible para-athletes and their supporters,” declared Citi Philippines CEO Aftab Ahmed.
“We are overwhelmed by the support of our partners, especially Citi Philippines. ‘Lakad Para Atleta’ and our partnership with Citi will help increase awareness of Para sports in the country as we prepare for the upcoming ASEAN Para Games in January 2020, as well as the Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics later on the same year. We hope to make our fellow Filipinos proud of our achievements both in the sporting arena as well as in our quest to promote equality for all,” said Philippine Paralympic Committee President Michael Barredo.

LAKAD PARA ATLETA” is co-sponsored by the Philippine Paralympic Committee and Citi Philippines with support of the University of the Philippines, the Philippine Olympic Committee, the Philippine Olympians Association and other organizations.

The event is also the culminating activity of Citi’s annual Global Community Day tradition, which gives employees the opportunity to make a positive impact in their communities through volunteerism. In May and June 2019, over 7,000 Citi Philippines employees participated in 23 volunteer activities to help communities in need and raise awareness of important issues, such as inclusion and equality.

About Citi

Citi, the leading global bank, has approximately 200 million customer accounts and does business in more than 160 countries and jurisdictions. Citi provides consumers, corporations, governments and institutions with a broad range of financial products and services, including consumer banking and credit, corporate and investment banking, securities brokerage, transaction services, and wealth management.

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About IPC

The International Paralympic Committee (IPC) is the global governing body of the Paralympic Movement. It co-ordinates the organization of the Summer and Winter Paralympic Games, and serves as the International Federation for 10 sports, for which it supervises and co-ordinates the World Championships and other competitions. The IPC’s vision is to enable Para athletes to achieve sporting excellence and inspire and excite the world.

TPB Boosts Efforts to Attract Korean Tourists

To boost efforts in attracting Korean tourists to visit the Philippines, Tourism Promotions Board (TPB) Philippines, the marketing arm of the Department of Tourism, will be participating in two major travel fairs happening in South Korea—The Korea World Travel Fair (KOTFA) on 06 to 10 June 2019 and HanaTour International Travel Show on 07 to 09 June 2019.

KOTFA is the biggest international travel fair in Korea with the participation of both international and domestic tourism-related organizations. This year, KOTFA is expected to generate an attendance of approximately 500 companies and 70 countries. The Philippines reserved six (6) booth spaces to be shared with airlines, hotels and top Korean travel agents in Seoul.

Meanwhile, HanaTour is Korea’s largest tour wholesaler with 1,200 HanaTour exclusive sales offices selling 14,000 tourism products through its 7,000 partners across the globe. This year, the Philippines is the featured country, co-marketing and promoting with HanaTour from June to July 2019, with multiple online and offline activities. The Philippines will also have eight (8) booth spaces at the event to help retail agencies aggressively sell and promote Philippine tour products, and provide general information about the country to the public.

South Koreans make up a huge portion of tourists visiting the Philippines annually, sharing approximately 22.3% of 1,587,959 visitors in 2018. TPB aims to increase Korean visitor arrivals by 25.80% upon completion of all tourism development plans by 2022, which will highlight the natural wonders of the Philippines.

As the country strengthens its campaign “It’s more fun in the Philippines” Korean tourists will get to choose from many offerings such as its beautiful pristine beaches, expansive shopping centers, dozens of adventure-laden activities, and the renowned warm hospitality of the Filipinos.

PH to Bridge Trade Gap with Indonesia Through Agri, Auto Parts Exports

BANGKOK – The Philippines (PH) is working to bridge its trade gap with Indonesia by exporting more agricultural products and automobile parts. At the sidelines of the 34th ASEAN Summit on 21-24 June, Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary Ramon Lopez discussed trade opportunities with his Indonesian counterpart, Minister of Trade Enggartiasto Lukita. The two ministers also agreed to organize a business matching session in Indonesia possibly around August or September 2019.

“President Rodrigo Duterte is pushing for the Philippines to narrow its trade imbalance with Indonesia. Thus we hope that openness from both countries will result in a mutually beneficial trade relationship between the two countries,” said Secretary Lopez. 

In 2018, Indonesia was the PH's 9th major trading partner, with around US$7.27 billion in trade. However, PH imports from Indonesia stood at US$6.40 billion, while PH exports were only at US$866.20 million.

Indonesian company PT Mayora reported that it started importing desiccated coconuts from PH since April 2019. Indonesia is also more willing to import shallots, bananas, and alcoholic beverages from PH.

Secretary Lopez noted that Toyota Fortuner, manufactured in Indonesia, is one of the top vehicle imports of PH. Hence he proposed for Indonesia to source some of its automobile parts from PH to manufacture the said vehicle. One of the long-term plans to increase PH exports was for Indonesia to import Mitsubishi Mirage G4 and Toyota Vios when PH becomes the regional production hub for these vehicles.

Likewise, they discussed the Special Safeguards (SSG) on PH coffee imports, issued through Department Order No. 6 by the Department of Agriculture in March 2018. The measure was set because the price of Indonesian coffee brand Kopiko is below the PH’s trigger price of PHP203.74 per kilo.  

The lower import price has led to higher imports affecting Filipino coffee manufacturers. Secretary Lopez said that PH appreciates Indonesia’s show of good faith and efforts to enhance trade relations, as well as Kopiko’s commitment to put up a coffee processing plant in PH. These, he said, will be positively considered in reviewing the SSG on coffee.