TESDA to give free skills training to returning OFWs from Kuwait

TAGBILARAN CITY, Pebrero 19 (PIA)–The Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) will provide free skills training to returning Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) from Kuwait.

TESDA-Bohol Information Officer Marichu Cua said that returning Boholano OFWs from Kuwait can enroll for free in technical-vocational (tech-voc) courses offered by their agency.

According to Cua, TESDA Director General Guiling Mamondiong has ordered the regional/provincial/district directors and TESDA Technology Institutions (TTI) to prioritize the OFWs from Kuwait for training programs being offered by TTI.

Mamondiong also directed TESDA officials to seek out and contact the returning OFWs in their respective areas, in coordination with the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) so that they could receive immediate assistance, Cua added.

The beneficiaries shall be entitled to free training, free assessment, and training support fund (TSF).

Early this month, some 400 overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) from Kuwait arrived in Manila. The first batches of migrant workers were granted amnesty by the Kuwaiti government.

President Duterte announced a total ban on the deployment of Filipinos to Kuwait after the body of OFW Joanna Daniela Dimafelis was found inside a freezer in an abandoned flat in the Arab nation and believed to be maltreated due to bruises and marks on her body.

TESDA invites senior HS students, Tech-Voc graduates to the Nat’l TVET Enrollment Day



TAGBILARAN CITY, Pebrero 19 (PIA)–The Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) will bring its scholarships closer to those who want to avail of free skills training and even help its graduates in finding a job.


With this, TESDA-Bohol is inviting all senior high school students and technical-vocational (Tech-Voc) graduates to come and join the National TVET Enrollment Day and Jobs Bridging Program on February 28, 2018.


This will be held  in three sites namely: Bohol Institute of Technology-International College (BIT-IC) in Tagbilaran City; Jagna Business Center in Jagna; and at Ramon Magsaysay Multi-Purpose Gym in Ubay.


TESDA-Bohol Information Officer Marichu Cua said that the activity aims to provide information on the different Technical Vocational Education and Training programs for the Boholanos and to promote TVET as preferred choice of career.


Cua said they will facilitate the enrollment of interested applicants to TESDA scholarship programs from 9am to 3pm on the said day.


Enrollment is open to all Filipinos age 15 and above for those interested to pursue various Tech-Voc courses.


Requirements for the enrollment include valid ID or NSO birth certificate and 1×1 picture. On the other hand, job applicants should bring their TESDA certificate and resume.


This activity is open to the public. (ecb/PIA7-Bohol)

Expanding PH’s halal market at Gulfood 2018

In its effort to fully participate in the global Halal market, the Department of Trade and Industry is assisting twenty-three (23) Philippine companies in showcasing the best of Philippine food products under the FoodPhilippines country pavilion at the 23rd edition of Gulfood or the Gulf Food Hotel and Equipment Exhibition and Salon Culinaire at Sheikh Rashid Hall in the Dubai World Trade Center, United Arab Emirates (UAE) happening on 18 to 21 February 2018.

Led by the DTI’s Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions (DTI-CITEM) in partnership with Philippine Trade and Investment Center Dubai (PTIC-Dubai), the Philippine delegation is keen to showcase the country’s top halal-certified, healthy and organic products, including fruits and vegetables, seafood and marine products, ethnic and gourmet selections, and other functional food and beverage products.

Known as the world’s biggest food and hospitality trade event, Gulfood is a one-stop platform for the latest tastes, trends and innovation in the international food industry. In 2017, the four-day event was participated in by around 5,000 companies and was attended by 97,000 trade buyers all over the world. With FoodPhilippines’ participation in the Gulfood 2018, DTI-CITEM is looking to rake in at least US$110-million export deals.

Locals, visitors, and trade buyers from Muslim-dominated nations such as the Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates (UAE), Qatar, Kuwait, Oman and Bahrain that are all part of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) are expected to visit the said trade event.

Saudi Arabia remains the largest food consuming GCC nation due to its large population base. The fastest growth rate for food consumption, however, is seen in Qatar and UAE with an annual growth of about 5.5 and 4.8 percent, respectively. In addition, UAE alone has a market outreach to about 1.5 billion people living in the Middle East, CIS, Central Asia, Africa and other Asian regions—making it the world’s third top re-export center.

Among the participating companies to the said event are: Asia Brewery Incorporated, Brandexports Philippines, Inc., Celebes Coconut Corp., Century Pacific Food, Inc., Gem Foods International Inc., Krystle Exports Phil. Inc, Magic Melt Foods, Inc., Mama Sita’s (Sandpiper Spices and Condiments Corporation), Marikina Food Corporation, Market Reach International Resources, Mega Global Corporation, and Miesto International Foods Corporation.

Other exhibitors include Millennium Specialty Coco Products, Inc., Philippine Grocers Food Exports, Inc, Pixcel Transglobal Foods Incorporated, Profood International Corporation, Q-Phil Products International, Roxas Sigma Agriventures, Inc., Sagrex Foods Inc., San Miguel Purefoods, Inc., Seatrade Canning Corporation, SL Agritech Corporation, and Super Q.

FoodPhilippines is the country’s signature brand that distinctly captures the reputation of the country as a top exporter of fresh fruits, marine products, and natural ingredients.

DA funds molecular lab in support of Bohol’s bid as Phil dairy capital



TAGBILARAN CITY, February 6 (PIA)–The Department of Agriculture (DA) is funding the construction and operation of a genetic molecular laboratory here in Bohol, at the Ubay Stock Farm (USF) in Ubay town.


Agriculture secretary Emmanuel Piñol revealed this as he explained the new direction in the country’s livestock dispersal program during this term, during his first official visit to Bohol January 26.


Speaking before a gathering of dairy industry stakeholder members of the Bohol Dairy Producers Association (BODPA), the Cebuano speaking secretary explained that the molecular laboratory is a long overdue support for the region’s livestock industry.


The molecular laboratory is a research and development facility which will be the center of a wide variety of scientific research in multiple disciplines in cattle and carabao breeding and genetics, biotechnology, nutrition and forage or pasture, animal health, reproductive physiology, management, product development as well as socio-economics and setting policy directions to the country’s livestock industry.

The DA, which is facilitating the entry into the country of some 5,000 heads of girolando cattle breeds here would largely be using artificial insemination (AI) and genetic engineering to make sure the succeeding calves bred would retain if not enhance the local dairy production as envisioned by the government as better breeds.

AI is basically a reproductive tool which harnesses the potential of outstanding males or sires.

Girolando, according to Pinol is a Brazilian accidental bred when a Holcein jumped off the coral and bred with a Gir, which produced a girolando offspring that increased the breed’s capacity to milk, several times.

Now the record keeper for the world’s most milk harvest at 105 liters in a day, the girolando which are now in quarantine prior to its shipping to Bohol would need the scientific laboratory to keep its milk production capacity at its peak, Pinol said.

The other goal is to make Bohol the country’s leading supplier of girolando breeds, Sec. Piñol revealed, even as he explained that cattle can only give milk if they give birth to calves.

Planned for reproduction using the trusted artificial insemination, the molecular laboratory can largely help in enhancing breeds and engineer them to best suit the tropical climate, taking specific characteristics from other milking breeds and increase production.

Moreover, the molecular laboratory operates as a research station where communal farming adopting communities can consult on issues of the animal health through diagnostic services and other support services.

And then revealing the current administration’s directions into animal dispersal, Piñol said he is now more keen on communal dispersal programs instead of the individual dispersal program.


During the individual dispersal regimes, a poor farmer who is given the chance to have a say to the dispersed farm animal would always sell the animal he can’t feed anymore if he can’t feed his family.


That is why, when it’s tuition fee times, more government dispersed animals are reported as they fell of ditches, died or were sick they have to be slaughtered, he poignantly illustrated those in the poverty bind.


As the DA intends to bring to Bohol 5,000  dairy cattle to support the country’s dairy supply and give it a boost, the calves would be put in dispersal programs for the cooperatives instead, where many people can have a say to an animal.


DA wants cooperatives to be dispersed with at least 240 calves which they would feed and fatten and when matured, would milk on their own ad earn.


The system too allows the province to graduate from importer of the Girolando to be a top exporter of the world’s top milking cow bred to farmers all over the whole country. (rahc/PIA-7/Bohol)

DA Secretary Emmanuel Piñol reveals the government move to set up a molecular laboratory in Bohol as a long overdue support to livestock here. He said the laboratory would be a crucial hub for the reproduction of the girolando cattle, which has to bear calves to milk. With the secretary are Gov Edgar Chatto and the Provincial Veterinary officials led by Dr. Stella Marie Lapiz. (rahc/PIA-7/Bohol)

Beautifully brutal TAPP Trail Run utter success



cramps and abrasions from unexpected falls but the look of satisfaction and contentment were the common feelings in the faces of all winners to finishers of Bohol’s notably most brutal: The Alicia Panoramic Park Trail R 2018 course as yet.


Endurance runners from Cebu, Cagayan de Oro and Leyte all flashed the thumbs up signs at the finish line when asked about the trails.


This as they showed nerves of steel and unparalleled determination as two runners hobbled off to cross the finish line in a classic one-two finish with only 23 seconds difference.


The two successively broke the tape amidst the modest cheering of a crowd two hours and eight minutes after completing the brutal 21 kilometer The Alicia Panoramic Park (TAPP) Trail Run 2018.


Meanwhile, a Boholano marathoner from Inabanga surged into the podium to finish fifth, the only one among locals who barged into the top spots in the grueling race that rolled off at a brisk pace, 5:30 AM February 10.


Bonifacio Monjas of Leyte and now of Naga Cebu, wearing number 18 racing bib and Paul James Zafico #140, of Cagayan de Oro played to the hilt a rivalry to the finish as both picked the pace to outrun each other as the chasing runner was about a minute behind them when they claimed the first and the second place.


Monjas completed the entire loop in 2:08:17, just 23 seconds ahead of Zafico who clocked in at 2:08:40.


Behind them was Andy Tunacao (#9) of Hilongos, Leyte, the pack leader as the runners assaulted the wicked ridges of Cambaol Alicia, towards the DENR ranger station sitting on top of the Binabaje Peak where the first checkpoint was located, some 5 kilometers into the race.


Ilongo, Roger Molinos (#158) completed the race in 2:36:01, about 3 minutes ahead of the runner in pursuit and Boholano pride Candelario Logronio (#21) chested the tape at 2:39:35.


In the women’s category, Baybay City runner Noriebelle Guinto (#137) picked the gold spot for the 21K challenge finishing the race in 3:32:19, ahead of Precious Mae Villaber of Cebu (#144) came in five minutes later at 3:37″23 to pick the silver post.


Another Baybay City runner Fe Hoffner Von Styggenien (#49) picked bronze finishing at 3:43:49 after the gunstart.


Jade Abellana (#66) came in fourth clocking a 4:04:01 followed by Jessie Ejoc (#75), 14 minutes later at 4:18:38.


179 runners signed up for the 21K, another 193 for the 5K run according to Richard Anania, TAPP Trail Run 2018 race director.


For the 5K male category, crossing the line first was Julius Abayabay (#5079), 2nd Daryll Gelicame (#5025), 3rd James Palma (#5181), 4th Benjo Namoc (#5009) and 5th Lloyd Lester A. Liwagon (#5200).


For the 5K run which hied off from The Farm at 5:00, Alicianhon Tarcela Titus (35143) crossed the finish line first and was the swiftest even after conquering the notoriously not for the beginner Alicia trails.


Following her was Rosario Romero (#5129), Mikee Alanis Tuyor (#5180), Czarina Platino (#5023) and (#5171)


Alicia Mayor Marnilou Ayuban and Vice Mayor Victoriano Torres III handed the awards and tokens to the winners as well as witnessed the giving of finishers medals to runners who each completed the race course within the cut-off time.


The TAPP Trail Run is the first running event Alicia has offered as part of its Foundation Days and we were thinking a maximum of 50 runners signing in, admitted Alicia Tourism and Information Officer Gudelia Lumugdang.


Race director Richard Anania however said the turnout was more than expected. Over 300 runners braved the Cambaol ridges, if only to prove they can conquer themselves and mountains before them.


On this, Mayor Ayuban hopes that they can sustain the activities at the TAPP and hopefully reap the tourism benefits of their environment friendly trail race. (rahc/PIA-7/Bohol)


Bohol paddlers take their trades to the skies, as endurance runners from across the region geared up for The Alicia Panoramic Park Trail Run 2018, a punishing 21 kilometer trail run that takes runners into brutal ascents and steep ridge running, a new sports tourism product of Alicia town. (rahc/PIA-7/Bohol)

PH, Turkey sign investment promotion, agriculture cooperation agreements at the 1st JCETC

ANKARA – Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary Ramon Lopez led a delegation to Turkey to convene the first Philippine (PH)-Turkey Joint Committee on Economic and Technical Cooperation (JCETC) as well as the signing of Summary of Discussions covering trade, investment promotions, and economic cooperation on 5-6 February 2018.

“The Philippines is committed to pursue several growth opportunities by strengthening partnerships with emerging economic partners like Turkey,” said Sec. Lopez.

The PH trade chief and his JCETC counterpart, Turkey’s National Defense Minister Nurettin Canikli, who is the Minister designated to represent their government in this meeting,  discussed various areas of trade and investment cooperation on micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs); manufacturing such as textiles and garments, pharmaceuticals, agri-processing for mango, coconut, banana; hotels and tourism; infrastructure; air services; customs; energy; science and technology; education; standardization; film and creatives; defense; contracting and consultancy services.

They offer to buy products PH can export to Turkey and shall venture with Filipino partners to manufacture the needed products, such as in textiles and pharmaceuticals.  They also offer to provide interest-free financial assistance for any project critical to the country’s development as well as security cooperation.

The meeting also involved dialogues on the ongoing government efforts in rebuilding Marawi and how Turkey, as a pre-dominantly Muslim country, can assist PH on its programs and projects. It included discussions on how Islamic financing can be utilized for those MSMEs affected by the siege.  They will study the industries that can be put up in Mindanao and can generate more jobs for the people in Marawi.

Both officials also witnessed the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on Investment Promotion by PH Board of Investments (BOI) Managing Head Undersecretary Ceferino Rodolfo and the Republic of Turkey Prime Ministry Investment Support and Promotion Agency (ISPAT) President Arda Ermut.

The MOU covered the intention of both parties to exchange best practices as well as information on investment environment and opportunities. Likewise, it encourages local companies to set up and expand their businesses in the partner country.

In 2016, Turkey was PH’s 45th trading partner, 45th export market, and 43th import supplier. In 2017 (covering January-November), total trade between two countries hit a significant increase with USD 163 million.

“Engaging with Turkey is in line with the thrust of President Rodrigo Duterte’s administration to engage with non-traditional trading partners to reinvigorate ties and increase trade between both countries,” said Sec. Lopez.

The trade chief cited current PH exports to Turkey are still confined mostly to desiccated coconut, personal care products, electronics, and tires. These areas are expected to expand with the renewal of economic ties between the two governments and the direct networking among the private sector business delegates.  Several business complementations were identified such as in textiles, tourism, pharmaceutical, and infrastructure development.

“During our discussions, we noticed that there are opportunities for our Philippine exporters—whether manufactured goods or services—to further tap the Turkish market,” he added.

The Turkish market comprises more than 80 million people, with per capita income twice of PH’s, and an 11.1% GDP growth posted during the 3rd quarter of 2017.

Meanwhile, an MOU on the enhancement of cooperation in agriculture—plant production and protection; animal farming, health, and breeding; fisheries and aquaculture; food industry; research; rural development; irrigation and extension service; as well as promotion of joint ventures between private sectors—was signed by PH Ambassador to Turkey Maria Rowena Sanchez and Minister Nurettin Canikli.

Partner Philippines

At the sidelines of the JCETC meetings, DTI met with PH and Turkish business officials through a forum with the Turkish Contractors Association (TCA). Sec. Lopez encouraged Turkish companies to join the PH growth story and partner with the country through infrastructure projects, including President Duterte’s “Build Build Build” program.

The meeting was arranged by the Philippine Trade and Investment Center (PTIC), the Philippine Embassy in Ankara, and the Turkish Ministry of Economy.

The Trade Secretary attended as well a roundtable discussion with the Foreign Economic Relations Board of Turkey or the Dış Ekonomik İlişkiler Kurulu (DEİK), a leading business organization based in Istanbul. Currently, the organization is represented by 94 founding institutions, 136 bilateral business councils, 5 sector-specific business councils, and 2 special purpose business councils.There will be an immediate Turkey business and investment mission to the Philippines on March this year.

Also at the roundtable discussion were Philippine-Turkey Business Council Chair Ernesto Chua Co Kiong and his counterpart from the Turkish-Philippine Business Council, Mr. Ilkem Sahin. Both expressed optimism on the future economic relations between the two countries.

Sec. Lopez likewise met with other Turkish companies interested in doing business in the country, such as IS Holding and Elginkan.

IS Holding is keen on having ventures in PH involving low cost mass housing, energy, shipyard development as well as film and content production. Meanwhile, Elginkan expressed their interest to expand its operations in Southeast Asia particularly in the Philippines as their potential manufacturing hub in the region.