Category Archives: Interview

Vice president Jejomar Binay

SSS denies allegations of overcharging on members’ loans

The Social Security System (SSS) said it has not violated any law or policy on lending from any supervisory body of SSS nor overcharged its member-borrowers contrary to reports that came out in media recently.
SSS Assistant Vice President for Lending and Asset Management Ma. Luz C. Generoso emphasized that the computation, which the SSS uses to calculate the interests on loans is based on a policy that was approved by the Social Security Commission (SSC) in 2000.
“In compliance with the SSC resolution, we started deducting in advance the first year interest on salary loans since 2000 to align the yield of our investments on member loans with the prevailing market rates.” Generoso said. “The interest computation was a regular and accepted method in credit-granting,” she added.
In a previous statement, Generoso said that the state-pension fund has now revised its guidelines to keep the fund in-step with the current low-interest rate environment and to improve administrative efficiency.
“We wanted to align our loan interest rates with the market so we reviewed and made necesssary amendments in our salary loan guidelines. We forwarded this to the SSC, which they approved last April.” Generoso said.
Under the new guidelines, amortizations for short-term member loans will be computed by charging interest on the outstanding balance of the loan at the beginning of each installment period. Since the borrower will only pay interest on the amount of the principal that has not yet been repaid, interest payment is declining every period.
The 10 percent effective annual interest of the loan will be charged based on diminishing principal balance and it will be amortized over 24 months.
“Since the approval of the new guidelines, we have undertaken the revision of our computerized processing system and we will be ready to implement this by December this year,” Generoso stated.

Over 600 firms criminally charged for SSS violations

The Social Security System (SSS) filed criminal charges against over 600 companies during the first half of 2012 for violations such as failure to register workers for SSS coverage, refusal to cooperate with SSS account officers and non-remittance of contributions.
SSS Assistant Vice President for Operations Legal Department Atty. Santiago Agdeppa said 494 out of the 606 employers charged during the period were for failure to remit monthly premiums amounting to P209.34 million, including penalties of more than P118 million.
“We continue to intensify legal measures to compel employers to fulfill their responsibilities under the law. As a result, the number of companies sued by SSS grew by 17 percent as compared with the 518 companies charged in the first half of 2011,” Agdeppa noted.
Under the Social Security Act of 1997, delinquent employers face six to 12 years in prison and a maximum fine of P20,000. They are also charged with a stiff monthly penalty of three percent on overdue contributions of employees.
Agdeppa revealed that the state-run agency collected P155.63 million from January to June 2012 from employers that settled their delinquencies after the SSS initiated legal actions against them such as issuance of demand letters and filing of cases.
“Non-remittance of contributions is the most common violation of employers, accounting for four out of every five cases filed by SSS. We also sued 109 firms for failure to register their workers for SSS coverage and refusal to present company records to SSS authorities,” he said.
The law requires employers to report workers to SSS within 30 days from start of employment and to promptly remit monthly contributions of employees. Employers are also required by law to present their records for inspection by SSS or its authorized representatives.
“To safeguard against unscrupulous employers, we encourage employees to monitor the remittance of their SSS payments by registering at our website at,” Agdeppa urged. “Employees can file a complaint against delinquent employers at their nearest SSS branch. They may remain anonymous in filing their complaints, but what is important is that they inform SSS so we can immediately start to investigate.”

Hagedorn at 5th CREBA Monthly Meet

Multi-awarded Puerto Princesa City Mayor Hon. Edward S. Hagedorn will be the guest of honour and speaker during the fifth monthly business meeting of the Chamber of Real Estate & Builders’ Associations, Inc. or CREBA.

This was announced by Charlie A. V. Gorayeb, CREBA national president. The meeting will be held at noontime of May 31, 2012, Thursday at Hotel Intercontinental, Makati City. During the same occasion, another important national activity, the 21st Annual CREBA National Convention, will be launched.

Founded in 1973 by known real estate leader and advocate Manuel M. Serrano, CREBA is the Philippine umbrella organization of the real estate and housing industry composed of property developers, builders, contractors, suppliers and manufacturers of construction materials, real estate service practitioners and other professionals and entities engaged in 68 allied fields. With 28 chapters and because of its relentless advocacy programs and initiatives, it has become government’s strongest ally in pursuing a truly rational and affordable national housing program.

According to Noel M. Carino, CREBA executive vice-president and chairman of the convention organizing committee, the confab to be held from October 18-19, 2012 at the Legend Hotel in Puerto Princesa, Palawan will focus on identifying world-class strategies that will sustain the boom that the property sector is currently enjoying. The theme of the Convention is “Global Filipino: Key to Conserving Growth through Sustainable and Strategic Real Estate Development and Practices,” he said.

Gorayeb said that signs of development and progress continue to shape up in the country’s various metropolises. “Building means growth; investments convey progress; good business leads to an upsurge in economic activity; and domestic growth always spells good news for the country,” he concluded.

Interested parties may contact the Secretariat at tel. nos. 373-2270 to 75 or email address #


Mall of Asia Arena: An Architectural Eyecon

The Mall of Asia Arena, the latest and biggest venture to rise at the foremost entertainment and retail destination—the Mall of Asia complex—is figuratively and quite literally an architectural “eyecon”. Priding itself on exceptional and world-standard amenities unique in all ofSoutheast Asia, the MOA Arena shall perfect the integrated shopping and entertainment experience at the Mall of Asia complex—a commitment linked to its vision of “changing the game, elevating entertainment”.

Owned by SM Investment Corporation and managed by West Avenue Theatres Corporation, also the managing arm of SM Cinema, the MOA Arena began construction in 2010. The distinctive eye-shaped façade symbolizes the MOA Arena’s promise of delivering top-notch entertainment to its audience.

According to Mr. Edgar C. Tejerero, Senior Vice President of West Avenue Theatres Corporation, the Sy family, headed by SM Group of Companies magnate Henry Sy, Sr., is very much involved in the project. The aesthetics of the MOA Arena were thoroughly conceptualized and the details of the construction, well studied. Apart from its vision to promote local talents, Mr. Tejerero added that, with the MOA Arena in the Mall of Asia complex grounds, it is a hope thatManilawill soon become a choice promoters and tourist destination for entertainment and sporting events.

The Mall of Asia Arena houses cutting-edge facilities:

With a land area of an impressive 64,085 square meters, the MOA Arena is equipped with state-of-the-art technology and world-class facilities. The MOA Arena’s eye-shaped exterior seeks to channel the message that every single event to be held in its premises will surely be a “feast for the eye”.

The MOA Arena, with its massive all-glass façade, can accommodate a seating capacity of 15,000, with a full-house capacity of 20,000. This five-level ultramodern events venue also boasts of Robbins floorings, eight-sided, center-hung scoreboards by Daktroniks, retractable Spalding basketball goals and an LED ribbon boards—all of NBA standards. CCTV cameras will be provided by Mobotix, the same company that equips the Vatican Apostolic Library at theVaticanwith professional-grade, high-resolution security devices.

The Arena also employs the leading edge plug-and-play set-up that can enable live beaming through SM Cinema theatres nationwide.

For its patrons’ maximum convenience, the Arena is designed with 16 comfortable smoking lounges. For ease-of-access, there are 10 elevators available in the premises. 34 units of escalators are also employed, with 8 units in each of the floors. To add, special access lanes for
PWDs are also provided for.

To comply with international standards, the Arena also has four dug-outs, a mess hall for an event’s technical team, a room exclusive for press conferences and even a special area for meet-and-greet affairs.

Parking-wise, the MOA Arena has more than 2,000 parking spaces located on the south side of the mall, with an additional 1,400 more accessible at the neighboring Mall of Asia Arena Annex (MAAX) building.

 The Mall of Asia Arena Corporate Suites:

The Mall of Asia  Arena is the first events venue not only in the country but in the entirety of Southeast Asia to introduce corporate suites —private deluxe rooms more known as the executive or the luxury box in arenas in the United States. Located just above the lower box section, the MOA Arena Corporate Suites are furnished with its own restroom, a mini bar, comfortable furnishings and a glass-paneled viewing deck complete with plush theater seats.

31 of these suites—referred to as Premier Suites—are being leased on a long-term basis. 10 Events Suites are also available for a per-event basis lease. The Premier Suites can go for about P9 million to P12 million and entitles suite-holders season pass for all of MOA Arena’s entertainment and sporting events.


The Mall of Asia Arena hosts top acts, both of local and international distinction:

Slated to stage inaugural concert performances on May 21 and 22 by international pop phenomenon Lady Gaga, the annual collegiate sports competitions Universities Athletic Association of the Philippines (UAAP) and the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) will also be held at the Arena with the National University Bulldogs hosting this season’s games.

In June, boy band sensations the Backstreet Boys and New Kids on the Block will grace the Arena along with Billboard chart toppers Edwin McCaine, The Fray and Taylor Dayne, while world-renowned Cirque du Soleil will perform in August.

The Arena has SM Tickets (; (02) 470-2222) as its official ticketing arm, with customer care agents promptly available for inquiries and ticketing purchases.

MOA Arena is set for Lady Gaga

The newly built SM Mall of Asia Arena (MoA Arena) poised as one of Asia’s premiere entertainment destinations is now set for international pop superstar Lady Gaga who is coming back to wow and capture the Philippine audience yet again with her outstanding performance and music on May 21 and 22.

MoA Arena caters to world-class events from concerts from the likes of Lady Gaga, to a wide range of sports events that promote the athletic spirit. It has 20,000 full-seating capacity and more than 2,000 parking spaces located on the south side of the mall, with an additional 1,400 slots at the neighboring MoA Annex Car Park Building. All these coupled with vast offerings of food and merchandise, VIP-level services and amenities and all the comforts of an arena-type venue take MoA Arena patrons’ entertainment experience to the next level.

As its inaugural concert, MoA Arena opens its doors to Lady Gaga’s Born This Way Ball tour that kicked off in South Korea last April 27 and is heading to Manila along with Japan, Hong Kong, Thailand, Singapore, Indonesia, and Taiwan. The Philippine leg of the Born This Way Ball is to be held on May 21. As this sold out and demand from concert-goers continued to rocket, Ovation productions has added one more concert date on May 22 and tickets are still up for grabs for Lady Gaga’s second show.

Tickets are priced at P15,000, P11,000, P5,000 and P2,000 and are available at all SM Tickets outlets nationwide. They can also be purchased online through

BDO cardholders can rejoice even more with their special and limited offer. For MoA Arena patrons who wish to use their BDO card to buy Lady Gaga concert tickets, they only need to inform SM Tickets that they want to avail the BDO promo and they get a 12-month installment plan with 0% interest, subject to terms and conditions.

Lady Gaga is expected to perform 110 shows in 13 cities and in 33 days this year to support her Born This Way album, which sold almost six million copies worldwide.

While the Born This Way Ball will be the inaugural performance at the MoA Arena, Filipinos can expect a grander spectacle during its launch on June 16. For more details, call 470-2222 or log on to

Pag-IBIG offers special financial assistance to

Pag-IBIG offers special financial assistance to

OFW members repatriated from Syria

The Pag-IBIG Fund is offering a special financial assistance to overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) who are affected by the political unrest in Syria.

Vice President and Pag-IBIG Board Chairman Jejomar C. Binay said that affected Fund members who fled the conflict in Syria can withdraw their contributions prior to membership maturity or avail of a moratorium on payment of contributions and loans.

“The Fund has approved the special financial assistance package to extend a helping hand to our kababayans who have been displaced by the Syrian conflict,” Binay said.

Pag-IBIG Chief Executive Officer, Atty. Darlene Marie B. Berberabe said the Fund understands the situation of the OFW-members which may result in their financial dislocation.

“We in Pag-IBIG Fund empathize with repatriated OFWs. And as a funding institution, we would like to help them cope with their financial needs in the best manner we can,” she said.

Under the Special Financial Assistance Program, affected OFW members are given the option to withdraw their contributions even prior to the maturity of their savings, unless they have outstanding housing loans with the Fund.

Repatriated members can also opt to continue their membership with the Fund but avail of the six-month moratorium on payment of membership contribution, or short-term or housing loan dues, provided they have no arrears in their obligations, she said.

For members who will avail of the moratorium, their payments will be suspended for six months without incurring penalty and additional interest. Their loan term will also be extended for another six months, Berberabe added.

Under Republic Act 9679, Pag-IBIG membership is compulsory for Filipinos working with foreign-based employers, whether they are deployed locally or abroad. Under the law, members may only withdraw their contributions upon maturity after 20 years and after making 240 monthly contributions, or under any valid grounds such as retirement, separation from service due to health reasons, permanent departure from the country, permanent disability or insanity, and death of the member.

Qualified members in the NCR may file their applications at the Pag-IBIG International Operations Group (PIOG) located at the Justine Building, 317 Gil Puyat Avenue, Makati City. Meanwhile, those in the regions may file their applications at the provincial branch nearest them. (end)

ARENA Media Invites Last Mar 28 2012

MALL OF ASIA ARENA media invites last Mar 28 2012


SM is proud to introduce the Mall of Asia ARENA, the up-and-coming premier events venue in the Philippines—the first of its kind in Southeast Asia. The Mall of Asia ARENA boasts of cutting-edge facilities, VIP-level services and amenities, all the comforts of an arena-type venue, and a vast offering of food and merchandise.

Geared towards hosting not just high-profile concerts of both local and international distinctionbut sporting events as well, The Mall of Asia ARENA is dedicated towards employing only the best ofaccommodations for guaranteed world-classentertainmentexperience.Once launched, it shall be the first events venue in the Philippines to use the upgraded and newly-improved portable floor design and the first to have a Spalding Goal in the country—the new NBA Basketball goal standard.

Supplying the Mall of Asia ARENA with its first-rateportable floor system is Robbins, Inc., maker of Robbins’ All-Star Plus portable floor system, the system of choice by 16 NBA arenas for professional NBA competition games.Robbins, Inc. is the premium supplier of high performance maple and synthetic sports flooring systems to the arena, education, religious and fitness marketsand is proud to claim more than 55 years of experience manufacturing portable floors – more than any other company in the industry.

The Mall of Asia ARENAseeks to be the home of local and international sporting events such as the NBA exhibition games, UAAP and NCAA annual athletic competitions,and, of course, national basketball tournaments.

The Mall of Asia ARENA is slated to officially open in May 2012.


The venue that is open all year-round
State-of-the-art facilities
Fully complements events with a wide variety of food, merchandise, and pre/post event activities.
Creates loyalty and builds patronage
With VIP level facilities and services for all types of events
Arena: The Home to Local and International Events

Foreign Sports
Local Sports
Clubbing Experience
Local Entertainment
Corporate Shows
Fashion Shows etc.
Ticket Booths Onsite

Available at All SM Cinema branches

Online Ticket Purchase

Corporate AddressSM Prime Holdings, Inc.
3F SM Megamall Cinema
Building A, SM Megamall
Julia Vargas Avenue corner EDSA
Mandaluyong City

Telephone Number : +632 470-2222Fax Number+632 477-3510


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