On October 23, 1417, the "king of the eastern country," Paduka Batara was buried in Dezhou, Shandong Province, China. Paduka Batara, along with two other kings, Maharajah Kolamating of the "west country" and Paduka Prabhu, the "Cave King", registered in Ming China as a tribute mission from Sulu in 1417.
This year (2017) will be the 600th year since the mission of Paduka Batara to China. To commemorate, three balangay boats were built and launched from Sulu to go to China, tracing the same route once taken by Paduka Batara. While it can be seen as friendly reminder of Filipino-Chinese relations, one may wonder why a Philippine "king" like him would bother going to a tribute mission to China? It is known that the Chinese tributary system involved China being the "Middle Kingdom" or the center of the world, with the rest of the states as subordinates. While the Chinese did not regard them as colonies, and did not administer them directly, they have become planets which gravitated and began revolving around the Chinese sun. In a way, however, is it perhaps symbolic of the Filipino kowtow (bowing down) to Chinese supremacy?
The Philippines should make its cities more competitive, inclusive and better governed to support the rapid increase in the number of Filipinos living in urban areas today, a joint study by the government and the World Bank said.
Released on Monday, the “Philippines Urbanization Review: Fostering Competitive, Sustainable and Inclusive Cities” report said the Philippines is one of the fastest urbanizing countries in East Asia but it is at a critical juncture.
About 45 percent of Filipinos live in urban areas today, the report added.
The ASEAN meeting in Vientiane focuses on fighting transnational crime with international partners.
ASEAN member states and dialogue partners have committed to enhance their cooperation efforts in combating transnational crimes in a bid to maintain the security at and across borders in the ASEAN region.
The Department of Finance (DoF) has has concluded a study identifying three major contributors to poverty reduction that could also help speed up the government’s quest for inclusive growth for Filipinos.
Already setting the policy direction for the government’s medium-term economic program—greater investment in infrastructure, conditional cash transfer (CCT) and micro-lending programs—accelerate poverty reduction and spell financial inclusion – according to the DoF’s first major research paper for the year, released on Monday.
Due to insistent demand, a generous extension has been approved to accommodate late abstract submissions. Abstracts for the 2017 EROPA Conference shall be accepted until 31 May 2017. However, this also means an extension for the sending of acceptance notifications, set to begin on 30 June 2017. Those who submitted on or before the 30 April deadline must also expect their acceptance notifications only by that time. This does not mean an extension in the passing of full papers and Powerpoint presentations, which shall still be on 15 August 2017. Late submissions must ensure that they can still provide their respective full papers and Powerpoint presentations by the designated deadline. Abstracts, full papers, and Powerpoint presentations must be sent to the conference e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
The extension was decided despite the overwhelming number of abstracts received this year. As of 15 May 2017, abstract submissions had already exceeded the records made during the 2015 and the 2016 conferences (92 and 93 abstracts received respectively). However, the great response being received in this year's conference has been appreciated and taken into attention. Thus, the extension was made.
Submissions to this year's conference will also be considered for publication in the Asian Review of Public Administration (ARPA). Also, presenters must remember to accomplish the online registration form for the 2017 EROPA Conference. For inquiries, feel free to contact us.
Looking back at the peace process at Biak-na-Bato, which enters its 120th anniversary in 2017, it may well be seen that the conditions past still mirror the situation today. The 1976 Tripoli Agreement. The 1996 Final Peace Agreement. The Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro. The Comprehensive Agreement on Social and Economic Reforms. The Philippines have long suffered from internal struggle, and it has hampered our path of progress.
What can we learn on the peace process from the Pact of Biak-na-Bato?
For the first time, the EROPA website (eropa.org.ph) has ranked in the world's top 0.5% in terms of popularity, jumping up 14 million notches in the rankings. This is a marked increase despite a noticeable reduction in major linking sites (down to 21 from 33). In addition, it has ranked nationally for the first time as well (at 35,955 in the Philippines). Using the ranking website Alexa Internet (which ranks only the top 30 million or top 25% websites) and comparing it with Internet Live Stats (which has the total number of live websites), the EROPA website's popularity has been regularly monitored since late 2016.
This recent accomplishment may not seem too much for many of us, but it is evidently a testament to the improvements done and additional features included in the new and revitalized website. It also shows how effective the energetic social media revitalization has become. However, the work is not done. This is just the beginning of the good pace we are currently taking.
Furthermore, an independent Wikipedia editor (presumably from Australia) created a Wikipedia article for EROPA, which can be accessed here, last April. The article was largely referenced by the updated website, which was renewed and improved last January. EROPA's relevance in the new century is evident with its inclusion in the so-called Free Encyclopedia.
Reaching further! Moving faster! We are EROPA, the premier organization working towards effective and efficient public service and governance.
Japan’s prime minister outlines his plan for revising Japan’s constitution by 2020.
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has finally spoken up about revising Japan’s Constitution. In an one-on-one interview conducted by Yomiuri Shimbun on April 26, Abe spoke at length about his vision and timeline for constitutional revision. He also delivered a pre-recorded video message in which he articulated his determination for revising the Constitution at a gathering of Nippon Kaigi.
The Spratlys or Spratly Islands (also known as Kalayaan in the Philippines, Nansha in the People's Republic of China, and Truong Sa in Vietnam) have a total land area of around two square kilometers (200 hectares), but surrounding waters total to around 160,000 square kilometers (more than half the area of the Philippines which is 300,000 square kilometers). The dispute concerning this archipelago came quite recently, with at least five countries seeking to claim the Spratlys (PRC, Taiwan/ROC, Vietnam, Malaysia, and the Philippines), but there is a long history behind it.
One may ask: why is there so much competition in claiming these islands?
A global bank has raised concern about the delayed passage of the Finance department’s tax reform program, saying that holding the much-needed tax reforms hostage in Congress would negate the government’s ambitious infrastructure spending plans for the next six years.
ANZ Research economist Eugenia Fabon Victorino said stalling the approval of the first tranche of tax adjustments would leave the Duterte administration’s pipeline of infrastructure projects unfunded, and would also keep agencies from preparing to adopt new tax collection methods.
The Department of Finance (DoF) has already submitted the first package of its proposed tax reform plan to the House of Representatives, which involves adjusting the income tax brackets for individual earners. The revenue hole will be plugged by the removal of some exemptions to value-added tax (VAT), coupled with higher duties on cars and fuel, as captured by House Bill (HB) 4774.
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