Palawan News January 2013

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Dietary supplement is a product that contains vitamins, minerals, herbs or other botanicals, amino acids, enzymes, and/or other ingredients intended to supplement the diet. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has special labeling requirements for dietary supplements and treats them as foods, not drugs.

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Undergroud River in Palawan
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Underground river in Pureto Princesa, Palawan
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Baracuda Lake, Coron, Palawan

Wars of ancient history were about possessions, territory, power, control, family, betrayal, lover's quarrel, politics and sometimes religion.

But we are in the Modern era and supposedly more educated and enlightened .

Think about this. Don't just brush off these questions.

  • Why is RELIGION still involved in WARS? Isn't religion supposed to be about PEACE?
  • Ask yourself; What religion always campaign to have its religious laws be accepted as government laws, always involved in wars and consistently causing WARS, yet insists that it's a religion of peace?


There are only two kinds of people who teach tolerance:
  1. The Bullies. They want you to tolerate them so they can continue to maliciously deprive you. Do not believe these bullies teaching tolerance, saying that it’s the path to prevent hatred and prejudice.
  2. The victims who are waiting for the right moment to retaliate. They can’t win yet, so they tolerate.
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U.S. Ambassador to the Philippines Kristie A. Kenney and USAID/Philippines Environment Office Chief Daniel Moore witness the safe and sustainable collection of ornamental fish by certified Marine Aquarium Council collectors in Palawan

Province of Palawan, Philippines

P52.98-M agrarian infra projects turned over by DAR-Palawan

By Victoria Asuncion S. Mendoza (VSM/TBO - PIA 4B, Palawan)

PUERTO PRINCESA CITY, Palawan, Jan. 31 (PIA) -- The Department of Agrarian Reform turned over Wednesday P52.98-million worth of rural infrastructure projects implemented under the Agrarian Reform Infrastructure Support Program (ARISP) Phase III in Barangay Berong, Quezon.

The ARISP projects include the P33.41 million Tagbolante Bridge and approaches, P18.52 million Tagbolante Communal Irrigation Project (CIP), and the P1.05 million potable water supply project.

Palawan Governor Abraham Kahlil B. Mitra led the turn-over of the projects handing the ceremonial key to barangay chairman Victorino Danglong after the ocular inspection and ribbon-cutting at the 3 project sites.

The projects aim to reduce poverty and unemployment by providing the enabling mechanisms that will spur economic activities in that part of southwest Palawan.

Specifically, it is hoped that the road and irrigation projects will increase household incomes of farmer-beneficiaries of the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP) in Berong and nearby barangays.

The Tagbolante bridge connects Berong and other barangays of Quezon to the northern municipality of Aborlan, particularly Bubusawin and Apurawan, and Puerto Princesa City facilitating accessibility of people and goods to the major markets.

Began in 2011, the CIP will water 124 hectares of farmlands benefiting some 50 farmer-beneficiaries of the CARP.

The potable water supply facility consists of 12 dug wells with hand pump and two shallow wells evenly distributed in the seven sitios of the barangay catering to the needs of about 702 households.

Helping DAR in the realization of these projects are the other project implementers who also witnessed the turn-over ceremony – National Irrigation Administration, Dept. of Public Works and Highways, ARISP III Central Project Management Office, the provincial government, and the municipal government of Quezon.

Skipper, 4 passengers rescued as yacht drifts off Palawan

By Jerry E. Esplanada (Philippine Daily Inquirer)

MANILA, Philippines—Personnel of the Philippine Coast Guard station in Coron in northern Palawan rescued on Monday the captain and four passengers of the motor yacht Palawan Princess, which drifted after having engine trouble off Dibatoc Island, according to the PCG headquarters in Manila.

In a report, the PCG said on Wednesday that the skipper and passengers of the vessel had “safely arrived in Lualhati Wharf (in Coron) and [were] in good physical condition.”

The command identified the yacht captain as Simon Buxton, but did not name the yacht’s four passengers.

PCG investigation disclosed that the vessel “departed [from] Subic Bay on Jan. 24.”

The vessel was on its way to Puerto Princesa City when it encountered engine trouble on Jan. 28, five nautical miles off Dibatoc Island, also in Coron town, the Coast Guard said.

Upon learning about the troubled vessel, Coast Guard personnel “promptly rescued the captain and the vessel’s passengers and towed the distressed yacht to Lualhati Wharf,” the PCG said.

Talks on cross border trade between Malaysia and Palawan, near completion


PUERTO PRINCESA CITY, Jan. 29 (PNA) -- Talks on cross-border trading between Malaysia through Kudat and the Philippines via Brooke's Point, southern Palawan is near completion, Datuk Teo Chee Kang, member of the State Legislative Assembly of Sabah, recently said.

In a recent visit to Puerto Princesa, Kang said he strongly believes that the cross-border trade would become successful and would open fresh economic activities for the development of Kudat and Palawan.

He said that with Governor Baham Mitra’s and Brooke’s Point Mayor Narciso Leoncio’s “strong political wills,” the cross-border trade might happen anytime soon after concerned parties “have tied a few remaining loose ends.”

The cross-border trade is related to the Brunei Darussalam, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines-East Asian Growth Area or BIMP-EAGA, said Dr. Samuel Madamba, head of the Provincial Planning and Development Office (PPDO) in Palawan. The BIMP-EAGA is to strengthen the economic linkages among the countries.

Meanwhile, Mitra is optimistic that Palawan, particularly Brooke’s Point, is ready for the cross-border trade if it means new opportunities not only for the development of the province but also its residents.

Kang said around 40 businessmen in Kudat, Sabah have expressed interest to participate in the cross-border trade; and he also expects the state to also open different activities too, in other areas like Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Sarawak, and even Brunei Darussalam.

Palawan coop establishes plan for marine protected area


PUERTO PRINCESA CITY, Jan. 28 (PNA) –- A multi-purpose cooperative in Palawan recently created a Marine Protected Area Management Plan (MPAMP) in the southern town of Bataraza in a bid to protect, preserve and conserve their marine environment.

The Gintong Butil Multi-Purpose Cooperative (GBMC) created the MPAMP for Barangay Bono-Bono, Bataraza with the help of the provincial government through the Office of the Provincial Agriculture (OPA).

The plan is part of the agreement they signed as beneficiary of the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), which states that they should establish the plan to manage their Marine Protected Area (MPA).

The MPAMP is expected to be submitted by the GBMC to the municipal council of Bataraza for discussion and eventual passage as an ordinance, according to Dr. Romeo Cabungcal of the OPA.

He said the OPA conducted a Participatory Coastal Resource Assessment in Bono-Bono as part of preparation for the management plan.

Cabungcal said the activity is important to determine the marine resources, the number of residents, and other pertinent details about the place that can be considered in the MPAMP, including coordination with the locality’s fisherfolk association.

Part of the management plan is to ensure that fishery law enforcement will also be strengthened in Bono-Bono, said Cabungcal. Fish wardens have been trained to serve in the marine protected area.

Palace: Final figure on Tubbataha damage to be known after ship removal

(LBG, GMA News)

Malacañang expects to get a better idea of how much the United States government owes the Philippines in fines for the damage caused by the USS Guardian on Tubbataha Reef, once the ship is removed from the area.

Deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte said earlier reports that 1,000 square meters of coral reef had been damaged is just an initial assessment.

“As of the moment wala pang firm figure diyan. What we know now is according to the task force that is there... may 1,000 square meters, ito ang baseline assessment of the damage. Hindi pa natatanggal ang vessel, that may change after the vessel is extricated," she said on government-run dzRB radio.

“Ang aking alam ang fine tumatayo sa $300 per square meter...," she added.

The USS Guardian “wandered” into and ran aground at Tubbataha Reef last Jan. 17, causing damage to coral reefs in the area. Tubbataha is a UNESCO Heritage Site.

President Benigno Aquino III had said an apology alone may not be enough for the US government to fix the damage caused by the grounding of the USS Guardian at Tubbataha Reef.

In an interview with reporters covering his visit to Switzerland, Aquino said the US will have to comply with Philippine laws with regards to the incident.

“They’re showing you they respect us as a sovereign state, and we’d like to thank them (that) they are respecting our sovereignty and are very careful about our sensitivities. But that doesn’t exempt them from having to comply with our laws,” he said.

“They violated it, there are penalties. Then they will have to address all of these violations of our pertinent laws,” he added.

Aquino also said he wants to know how the ship, with its sophisticated navigation systems, managed to get into a protected area.

For now, he said the priority is to remove the ship, then to assess the damage.

P3.9-B Malampaya infra works riddled with graft

By Norman Bordadora (Philippine Daily Inquirer)

Corruption attended the P3.9-billion worth of infrastructure projects that were supposed to benefit Palawan and funded by the proceeds of the gas field in Malampaya off the western coast of the province, an administration senator yesterday said.

Sen. Teofisto Guingona III, chairman of the Senate committee on the accountability of public officials and investigations, validated the questions that environmentalist Gerry Ortega had raised about the misuse of Malampaya funds before he was killed two years ago.

“Based on what we saw on the findings of the [Commission on Audit], Doc Gerry was right. On whether there was corruption, there was corruption,” Guingona told reporters following the Senate blue ribbon panel’s initial hearing on the alleged irregularities that cost the country billions of pesos.

Thursday was Ortega’s second death anniversary.

Guingona said 355 projects worth P3.9 billion were not covered by documents required by the country’s procurement and auditing regulations.

“When the Commission on Audit (COA) arrived in Palawan, they were asking for documents but there were no papers given by the provincial government. So, they could not conduct their audit,” Guingona told reporters.

All projects not OKd by COA

“There are no documents even from the very basic document, the program of work. Under our rules, if you start a particular project, you have to make a program of work, followed by bills of materials,” he added.

Guingona said most of the questioned projects happened during the watch of former Palawan Gov. Joel Reyes, the principal suspect in the killing of Ortega.

Funds from the Malampaya Natural Gas Project for Palawan, Guingona said, were coursed through the provincial government, the city government of Puerto Princesa and the province’s two congressional districts.

“Out of the 355 projects constructed, all were disallowed by the COA. That is P3.9 billion. This is a staggering misuse of funds,” Guingona said.


The COA has recommended that the huge amount be returned to the country’s coffers. Government officials and private contractors have been charged in the Office of the Ombudsman in connection with the misuse of funds.

“We have to conduct more hearings on why this happened,” Guingona said.

The senator said he would consider strengthening laws on infrastructure projects after the blue ribbon inquiry shall have been finished.

In a statement, Guingona described the roads constructed with the use of Malampaya funds as “mashed-potato” projects.

“Although costing scores of millions of pesos each, these projects involve incomplete and muddy roads and bridges, and school buildings left unfinished,” he said.

Palawan roads ‘highest costing roads’ in PH—DPWH

By Maila Ager (

MANILA, Philippines. — The roads in Palawan have been dubbed by the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) as one of the “highest costing road” projects in the country.

Estimated at lP10 million, DPWH Secretary Rogelio Singson said this was higher than the “normal standard” cost.

“They are much higher than our normal standard cost. I considered them relatively one of the highest cost road projects in our country,” Singson told the Senate blue ribbon committee hearing on Thursday.

Singson said the standard cost of a two-lane road was from P25 million to P30 million per kilometer but in Palawan, the cost went as high as P40 million per kilometer.

“It could go as high as P40M. Of course they will all justify that this is a difficult terrain, tinaasan yung embankment, tabi ng bundok – all of these could come into play in coming up with that cost,” he pointed out.

Singson explained that the funding for Palawan roads came from the General Appropriations Act, Malampaya gas project, and the so-called “SONA” funds.

And based on their record, he said, a total of P6 billion from the “SONA” funds went to Palawan alone from 2008 to 2009 while only P827 million came from the Malampaya project fund since 2004.

Not only was the cost of the roads high but Singson said he also discovered that the completed roads were not “acceptable by standards.”

This was the reason why, he said he made a surprise visit in Palawan on Jan$ 24, 2011, the same day that Palawan broadcaster and environmentalist activist Gerardo “Doc Gerry” Ortega was murdered.

Ortega’s death was being linked to his expose on the alleged irregular use of the Malapaya project funds.

“I was in Palawan when Gerry Ortega was killed. In fact, I was a bit hesitant baka na-trigger because I was there to really inspect the roads,” Singson said.

“I was there. I was there. Medyo natakot din ako dahil parang sabi ko baka na-trigger ng pagbisita ko dahil I was going to inspect the roads. I know that was a very hot issue already in Palawan…” he said.

Singson said he decided to inspect the roads in the province because he refused to accept that some of the roads declared as completed were actually that and found out that “it was not just acceptable by the standards that I have set.”

“I asked the contractor to do remedial measure before we could even accept because I noticed that there’s a road segment done by a Korean company way before, which was in a much better condition than the newly completed roads,” he said.

“So by standards, (it) was not just acceptable. The shoulders were not in the proper sizes, the shoulders were much lower than the pavement itself. So sabi ko, wala namang ganyanan, napakamahal na nitong kalyeng ito. Let’s put it in proper shape,” he added.

'It’s the reef not the ship' – says Palawan Gov on Tubbataha environment tragedy

(VSM/TBO-PIA 4B, Palawan)

PUERTO PRINCESA CITY, Palawan, Jan. 23 (PIA) -- “It’s the reef not the ship that we should focus on,” Palawan Governor Baham Mitra reiterated as the stand of the Tubbataha Protected Area Management Board (TPAMB) in Tuesday's press conference at the Provincial Capitol this city.

Mitra presided over the meeting attended by the agency-members of the TPAMB and the National Task Force on Tubbataha to determine and agree on immediate actions to be taken following the grounding of the USS Guardian, a US navy minesweeper.

“It’s an unfortunate incident that nobody wants to happen, but the damage has been done, and goal now is to extricate that ship with no further damage to the reef,” Mitra said.

At present, there are nine Philippine and US sea vessels on scene waiting for good weather to assess the damage and to begin the extrication of the grounded ship. Strong winds and choppy waters have delayed this.

As suggested by the governor, the National Task Force is looking at the possibility of lifting the entire ship rather than dragging and pulling which would create further damage to the reef.

In another press briefing, Rear Admiral Rodolfo D. Isorena, Philippine Coast Guard Commandant said that the lifting is being considered and may be possible with the arrival of USS Salvor.

He also assured that there are no oil leaks and, just in case, the maritime pollution equipment of the Philippine Coast Guard has been on stand by since day one.

Meanwhile, Jose Maria Lorenzo Tan, president and CEO of World Wildlife Fund (WWF) Philippines said earlier that the grounded USS Guardian should better be freed from the reef because further delay causes more damage.

“Damage to the reefs continues with each wave, with each blow of the ‘amihan(northeast wind),' with each minute that the ship remains on the reef, the damage will increase,” said Tan.

Tan further said that the process of assessment of the damage and its impact would take time because the consideration is the entire constituency of the Tubbataha reefs.

“You cannot just look at the corals, or the fish bio-mass, but the birdlife, the water quality, and the impact on fishery around the Sulu Sea, not only in Cagayancillo but all around Panay, Mindanao, Tawi-Tawi, Palawan because these are all the constituencies of the Tubbataha reefs,” Tan said.

He added that the TPAMB is collaborating closely with the Task Force created and led by DOTC Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya and is in touch with various agencies and the their frontliners which are the Philippine Navy, Philippine Coast Guard, the WESCOM and the MARINA.

WWF Philippines is a member of the TPAMB and is a long-time partner in the implementation of conservation programs, research activities, and livelihood projects in communities of the municipality of Cagayancillo.

DOTC creates Task Force on Tubbataha

In the press briefing in Malacañang, DOTC Sec. Joseph Emilio Abaya announced the creation of the Task Force that would consolidate all efforts of the Philippine government to address the marine environmental issue of the grounding of the USS Guardian in Tubbataha.

DOTC USEC Eduardo Oban Jr., lead person for the Task Force, said that its main focus is to ensure that the US ship is extricated with minimal damage to the reef as soon as the weather permits.

Oban attended the TPAMB meeting this morning at the Provincial Capitol with Rear Admiral Rodolfo Isorena, Commandant of the Philippine Coast Guard.

He said that the Task Force will coordinate all actions of concerned agencies involved in the monitoring , assessment, investigation and salvaging in the Tubbataha reefs.

All movements of US ships, other assets required for the salvage, and US personnel will have to be coordinated with the Department of Foreign Affairs and the VFA Commission.

The Task Force has established its Operation Center at the headquarters of the Coast Guard District IV and would provide periodic updates of the progress of the Tubbataha situation through the center.

Tubbataha PAMB cites 5 violations by USS Guardian


PUERTO PRINCESA CITY, Jan. 22 (PNA) –- Citing that the grounding of the USS Guardian is “an unfortunate incident,” the Tubbataha Reef Natural Park (TRNP) Protected Areas Management Board (PAMB)said in an official statement on Tuesday that it is sending a formal notice of the list of violations to the U.S. Navy

In the official statement of the PAMB, it said the grounding incident “is an unfortunate incident. No one wanted this to happen. But the damage has been done.”

“We are duty-bound to enforce the law,” said in the official statement by Palawan Governor Abraham Kahlil B. Mitra, the chairman of the Tubbataha PAMB.

Under Republic Act 10067, the Act that established the TRNP in Palawan as a marine protected area, it is the Tubbataha PAMB’s mandate to protect, preserve and promote the resources of the reef.

Mitra said in order to fulfill the PAMB’s mandate and uphold the rule of law it will be issuing the U.S. Navy a formal list of violations of the Act in the grounding incident involving the USS Guardian.

“We will ask them to take responsibility, and immediately pay the fines,” he said, adding this will be done as soon as assessment of the damage has been done.

Cited violations of the Act this time are for unauthorized entry; for non-payment of conservation fee; for obstruction of law enforcement officer; for damages to the reef; and for destroying resources.

These actions are being done without prejudice to the results of subsequent assessments that have yet to be done to determine the extent of damage to the park and its resources as a direct result of the grounding, as well as incidental damage arising out of the ongoing retrieval operations.

Subsequent to ship retrieval and the assessment of park damage, the Tubbataha PAMB intends to serve a second formal notice of violation to the U.S. NAVY that will quantify the estimate of destruction and the fines that must be paid.

Agriculturalist office conducts corn farms validation in Palawan


PUERTO PRINCESA CITY, Jan. 21 (PNA) –- In an effort to find out the weaknesses and problems faced by corn farmers in the province, who produce low production results, the Office of the Provincial Agriculturist(OPA)recently conducted a validation of the crop farming in municipalities in southern Palawan.

Assistant provincial agriculturist Dr. Romeo Cabungcal said the objective of the validation is to strengthen the corn farming industry following its identification in the Food Staple Sufficiency Program under the Agri-Pinoy of the Department of Agriculture(DA).

The validation team particularly focused on the town of Bataraza since it is the municipality with the largest corn farms in Palawan, he said.

Based on the validation, the OPA discovered that the foremost problem of corn farmers is the low-buying rate in the market. Cabungcal said this makes the person put less priority on planting corns.

“We will study and research how we can provide solution for this problem so that farmers will have interest on planting the corn crop,” he said.

Currently, there is a shortage of corn production in Palawan when the demand is increasing. Cabungcal said this is the reason why the province had to source it from other regions.

Tubbataha Reef damage getting worse


MANILA, Philippines -- Damage to the Tubbataha Reef has worsened as winds and waves shoved to 90 degrees the minesweeper “USS Guardian” that ran aground Thursday.

A report from ABS-CBN News Palawan’s Edinel Magtibay said water is already seeping into the minesweeper, which supposedly initially damaged at least 10 meters of the coral reefs.

The Palawan government said it will ask the United States Navy to pay for the damages.

Palawan Governor Abraham Kahlil Mitra and the Protected Area Management Board said it will take 20 to 100 years to fix the damaged reefs, a marine sanctuary southeast of the province.

United States authorities earlier said an inaccurate navigation chart data has led to the grounding of the minesweeper.

A statement from the Pacific Fleet public affairs indicated that, “the U.S. National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) today (January 19) provided preliminary findings of a review on Digital Nautical Charts (DNC) that contain inaccurate navigation data and may have been a factor in the Guardian grounding that occurred in the Sulu Sea on Jan. 17.”

Malacanang said, however, it will await a final investigation before it will disclose the government’s next move.

In an interview with radio dzRB, deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte said “it will be prudent to wait for the results of the investigation that will be conducted by the Department of Foreign Affairs, Department of National Defense, etc.”

Puerto Princesa gov't to get P10M from DA


PUERTO PRINCESA CITY, January 19 (PNA) -– The Dept. of Agriculture will be giving P10M to the city government for the establishment of organic farming, agriculture officials here said Saturday.

The grant supports the agri-tourism development project of the city government in consonance with the Agriculture Act of 2010 or the Organic Farming Act.

The local government said the amount will be beneficial to the farmers and the interest of the city government.

In a related development, the Sangguniang Panlungsod enacted a measure giving authority to Mayor Edward Hagedorn to ink a memorandum of agreement with the DA for the P10M grant.

Considering that it will be advantageous on the part of the city government and one of the main thrusts of the leadership is agriculture, the Sangguniang Panlungsod unanimously supported the measure by giving the authority to the city mayor for the implementation of the project.

There will be no cash out on the part of the city government.

Officials said the only counterpart is for the hiring of additional staff to ensure the implementation of the projects.

Agrarian reform department completes P51M worth of infra projects in Palawan

By Victoria Asuncion S. Mendoza (VSM/TBO -PIA-Palawan)

PUERTO PRINCESA CITY, Palawan, Jan 18 (PIA) -- The Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) has completed the construction of rural infrastructure projects worth P51 million in an agrarian reform community in Barangay Berong, Quezon town. The projects are aimed at sustaining development growth in the area.

The completion of the P18.5-million Tagbolante communal irrigation project (CIP) and the P33-million Tagbolante bridge and Road Approaches Project will benefit more than a hundred families.

The Tagbolante CIP is jointly implemented by the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) with the National Irrigation Administration and financed by DAR and the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) under the Agrarian Reform Infrastructure Support Program (Arisp).

The CIP irrigates about 124 hectares of land of small farmer families who were once dependent on rainfall. The project enables farmers to plant rice more than once a year, boosting crop yields and household income.

Another Arisp infrastructure project which is expected to transform Berong and its nearby barangays to productive agricultural areas is the Tagbolante Bridge and Road Approaches project constructed at a cost of P33 million.

The bridge will facilitate accessibility of flow of goods from Berong to the town center and other barangay and vice versa. Construction of the bridge began in 2011 through the Department of Public Works and Highways and is also administered under DAR-Arisp.

These rural infrastructure projects serve not only the direct beneficiaries of the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program but also the other residents of the municipality. The projects are scheduled for turn over this month.

US ship runs aground in Tubbataha Reef

By Jaime Laude (

MANILA, Philippines - A United States (US) minesweeper that docked at Subic last Sunday ran aground at the Tubbataha Reef in Palawan province at dawn Thursday.

Maj. Oliver Banaria, commander of the 6th Civil Relations Group of the Armed Forces of the Philppines (AFP), was quick to clarify that it has yet to be determined if the ill-fated US warship -- USS Guardian (MCM5) -- hit the corals or simply sailed right into a shallow portion of the country’s declared national marine park.

Citing initial reports, Banaria said the scene of the mishap is about 98 nautical miles from Puerto Princesa City. The mishap took place at around 3 a.m.

“It’s already near Puerto Princesa, but not at the side of the West Philippine Sea,” Banaria said, referring to the Sulu Sea area where the mishap occurred.

A surveillance plane and a Philippine Navy gunboat (PG-383) were dispatched to the area to check the condition of the vessel and its crewmembers.

In press statement recently released by the US Embassy, it said the USS Guardian will be dropping anchor at Subic Bay to refuel and replenish its supplies before proceeding to Puerto Princesa City in Palawan for another port call.

The embassy said that the Subic port call of the USS Guardian will also give an opportunity to her 80 crewmembers, eight of them Filipino-Americans, to an overnight furlough.

On the other hand, the US Pacific Command (USPACOM), confirming the mishap, said that no crewmember of USS Guardian was hurt in the incident.

“The Avenger-Class ship had just completed a port call in Subic Bay, Olongapo City and was en route to her next port of call when the grounding occurred,” it said.

It added: “The ship is currently stuck on the reef, approximately 80 miles east-southeast of Palawan Island. The crew is currently working to determine the best method of safely extracting the ship, while the cause of the grounding is currently being investigated.”

Last year, a Chinese warship also ran aground at Half Moon Shoal in the West Philippine Sea, 70 miles south of Palawan.

Malampaya Foundation in Palawan starts looking for scholars


PUERTO PRINCESA CITY, Jan. 16 (PNA) -- The Malampaya Foundation, Inc. (MFI) of the Malampaya Natural Gas Project joint venture partners is currently looking for scholars in Palawan for 2013, who are interested to enroll in technical vocational scholarship program.

The scholarship program called "Bringing Employment through Skills Training Scholarship" or BEST is already on its second year of implementation by MFI in cooperation with the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) and the Puerto Princesa School of Arts and Trade (PPSAT).

For this year, MFI targets to have around 30 scholars for the first batch in two vocational courses the applicants might like to consider. These are Shielded Metal Arc Welding (SMAW) and Integrated Construction Skills and Building Operatives (ICS-BO) that has five skills, like masonry, general carpentry, plumbing, tile setting and electrical installation.

The scheduled examination and interview for applicants will be on January 30 and 31 at the PPSAT in Barangay Sta. Monica.

Last year, the MFI was able to provide scholarship grants to at least 60 scholars under the BEST.

DAR-Palawan exceeds 2012 LAD target

By Victoria Asuncion S. Mendoza (VSM/TBO -PIA-Palawan)

PUERTO PRINCESA CITY, Palawan, Jan 15 (PIA) -- The Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) Palawan office surpassed by 18 percent its land acquisition and distribution (LAD) program target in 2012 and maintained its position as the top performer under the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program in Mimaropa.

In 2012, DAR-Palawan acquired and distributed 2,359 hectares, way above its target of 1,992 hectares.

The DAR is the lead implementing agency of the country’s Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program or CARP through land tenure improvement, agrarian justice, and coordinated delivery of essential support services to client-beneficiaries.

DAR-Palawan has been a consistent top performer in LAD surpassing its yearly target by over 100 percent for more than twenty consecutive years while sustaining the intensity in the provision of support services to its farmer-beneficiaries as well as in the delivery of agrarian justice.

Provincial Agrarian Reform Officer Conrado Guevarra said that the 2012 accomplishment plus the LAD coverages of the past 24 years add up to a total of 56,519 hectares which comprise 97 percent of the total CARP scope for Palawan of 58,212 hectares.

He said that the lives of the beneficiaries have fared well under the CARP. “Farmers who benefited from the agrarian reform program and chose to cooperate in the Agrarian Reform Community Development Program are better off than of those who are not,” Guevarra said.

He said that 1,525 hectares are targeted for 2013 based on the recent target setting session conducted by its Operations Division and field officials. These are privately-owned agricultural lands and are located in Puerto Princesa City and the other 10 municipalities in Palawan.

It is set to turn-over the P18.5-million Tagbolante Communal Irrigation Project and the P33-million Tagbolante Bridge and Road Approaches Project in Berong, Quezon this month. These two rural infra projects are being implemented under the Agrarian Reform Infrastructure Support Project.

Guarte, Sarmiento top Stags run

(The Philippine Star)

MANILA, Philippines - SEA Games veteran Mervin Guarte and Miean Sarmiento dominated the 10K race to rule their respective divisions in the Stags Run 3 dubbed “Takbo Para sa Bokasyon” at the Aseana City near the Mall of Asia and Macapagal Blvd. in Pasay yesterday.

Guarte, a silver medalist in the middle distance in the last SEAG in Jakarta, clocked 29 minutes and 55 seconds to annex his second straight win in the event held to generate funds for San Sebastian College’s apostolate missions in Sierra Leone in West Africa and remote barangays in Palawan.

Ryan Hullesa, last year’s 5K winner, timed 31.10 to finish second while Justin Tabunda, the inaugural edition winner, wound up third in 31.29.

Sarmiento improved from third last year with a 54.16 minute clocking, beating Beathia Gano’s 55.3 and Rona Montero’s 56.17 in the event backed by the Kabataan Jeep ni Erap headed by Angel Espiritu, Azia direct fashion for less, Life Oil, the pure power of mother nature, Alfonso Ronco, Joel Chua, Marlon Ortiz and Pharex.

Over 4,000 runners participated in the event also staged as part of San Sebastian College-Recoletos’ 66th founding anniversary and 100th year as an Augustinian Order.

Former President Joseph Estrada also took part in the event along with Ambassador Danny Victoria, Jeep ni Erap president Renato Soriano, Manila No. 1 camp Eduardo Balauro and Ambassador Antonio Villamayor.

“I would like to thank San Sebastian for giving me this chance to celebrate with you these two important occasions,” said Estrada.

San Sebastian president and chief organizer Fr. Christopher Maspara, OAR, said the third edition of the event was a huge success.

“We would like to thank everyone who supported our event and hopefully we’ll be having another race next year,” said Maspara.

Michael Bacong topped the 5K in 20.24, defeating Reymart dela Cruz (20.25) and Karl Tadeo (24.46) while Cathlyn Dolalas ruled the distaff side in 36.06, besting Mia Atendido (36.25) and Rachel Franco (39.06).

Jason Nabong took the 3K title in 21.53 over Guarte’s younger brothers Melchor (22.15 ) and Melbert (23.53).

U.S. anti-mine Warship to arrive in Subic - Palawan


USS Guardian (MCM-5), an Avenger-class mine countermeasures ship, is the second U.S. Navy ship of that name. Guardian was laid down on 8 May 1985 by the Peterson Builders Inc., Sturgeon Bay, Wisc.; launched on 20 June 1987; and commissioned on 16 December 1989.

The United States has sent another battleship to the country. The anti-mine vessel is expected to arrive in the Philippines on Sunday, the US Embassy in Manila said in statement released Saturday.

"[The] USS Guardian (MCM-5), a U.S. Navy Avenger-class mine countermeasures ship, will arrive in Subic Bay on Sunday, January 13, for a routine fuel stop. This visit will allow the ship to replenish supplies as well as give the crew an opportunity for rest and relaxation. After an overnight visit in Subic, the ship will proceed to Puerto Princesa for another brief visit," the embassy said.

It added: "The USS Guardian is assigned to the U.S. Navy's 7th Fleet and is forward-deployed to Sasebo, Japan. Her crew of around 80 officers and enlisted personnel includes eight Filipino-Americans. Notably, the ship's highest ranking Enlisted Sailor on board is a Filipino-American originally from Olongapo City."

U.S. battleships have been a common sight in the Philippines since last year after China renewed its aggressive claims over the Spratly Islands in the West Philippine Sea.

Other countries such as Vietnam, Taiwan, Brunei and Malaysia also partly claim portions of the Spratlys.

China and the Philippines are also in dispute over Panatag (Scarborough) Shoal about 198 kilometers west of Subic Bay.

Coast Guard: Korean tourist drowns off Palawan

(ELR, GMA News)

A Korean tourist drowned while swimming off El Nido in Palawan province last Tuesday, the Philippine Coast Guard said Friday.

The Coast Guard said the tourist, initially identified as Kim Han Gu, 44, was part of a group of 13 Korean tourists who took an unregistered motor boat to the area.

Citing initial information, the Coast Guard said the incident occurred last Jan. 8 when the 13 Korean tourists took the motor boat MB Erren from the Minoloc Beach Resort where they were staying to Small Lagoon.

Kim was later reported missing, and a search operation led by tour guide Jonathan Vallador saw Kim's body. They tried but failed to revive him.

The victim's body was brought back to the resort and rushed to the Rural Health Unit for further medical assistance but it was too late.

"Meanwhile, the boat operator and the tourist guide underwent series of investigation by the local police and Coast Guard Personnel in El Nido to probe the details of the drowning incident," the Coast Guard said.

Palawan high school to receive 20 computer units from DepEd


PUERTO PRINCESA CITY, Jan. 11 (PNA) -- A national high school in southern Palawan will receive 20 computer units from the Department of Education (DepEd) in cooperation with the Luntiang Pilipinas Foundation of Sen. Loren Legarda for qualifying in the regional search for Best School Forest Park.

Aside from the computer units, the Princess Urduja National High School (PUNHS) will also be receiving other educational materials that it can use to be able to set up its own computer laboratory.

The award to the PUNHS was given by Sen. Loren Legarda, founder of the Luntiang Pilipinas, in a formal ceremony Thursday at the DepEd’s Bulwagan ng Karunungan. All regional winners were awarded 20 computer units to be able to set up their own computer laboratories.

Of the 16 high schools that made it, five will be chosen as national finalists. The winner in the level will be awarded trophies and plaques, and P1.2 million for the construction of a new school building.

In a media release, Legarda said the competition aims to encourage “efforts to do tree-growing activities in all parts of the country and promote awareness on the importance of trees in making the environment lively and safe.”

Legarda said the contest is also a very good opportunity to engage a younger audience in environmental protection.

The winners were judged based on the sustainability of the forest park, creativity and aesthetics, the number of trees or seedlings planted based on size of site, and community involvement in planning and supervision of the forest park.

Palawan, Puerto Princesa City contenders for nat'l Gawad Pamana ng Lahi Award

By Victoria Asuncion S. Mendoza (LBR/VSM-PIA4B, Palawan)

PUERTO PRINCESA CITY, Palawan, Jan. 10 (PIA) -- The province of Palawan and Puerto Princesa City are national finalists in the national level of the Gawad Pamana ng Lahi (PNL) Award administered annually by the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG).

DILG Provincial Director Mario Daquer said that both LGUs are regional winners in the Mimaropa and become automatic contenders in the national level along with 11 provinces, 12 cities, and 10 municipalities.

He said that being a regional winner is a recognition of the provincial government’s adherence to good governance principles of transparency, accountability, and inclusivity in local administration and development.

As incentive for winning in the regional level, the province will get P3 million while Puerto Princesa City gets P2 million from the Performance Challenge Fund. Sablayan municipality in Romblon bagged the award for the municipality category.

The Gawad Pamana ng Lahi Award is a total award system conferred to the most deserving province/city/municipality for reason of exemplary performance in administrative, social, economic, and environmental governance.

As national finalists, the two LGUs have already been visited by the national validation team for screening processes which involved table assessment and on-site validation.

Daquer said that the assessment of the national validation team focuses on the scores in Local Governance Performance Management System, the Seal of Good Housekeeping, and the assessment of innovations and awards.

Winners in the national level will be awarded P5 million each for the province, city, and municipal category.

Palawan receives new awards from DILG


PUERTO PRINCESA CITY, Jan. 9 (PNA) -- The Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) in Palawan confirmed that the province will receive two awards: the 2012 Gawad Pamana ng Lahi in Region IV-B and the Silver Seal of Good Housekeeping also for the same year.

DILG Provincial Director Mario Daquer congratulated Governor Baham Mitra, Vice Governor Clara Reyes, and the members of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan for gaining the two awards before the previous year ended.

He said “the end of the year has been good for Palawan because of the two awards, which shows that the provincial government under the Mitra leadership is doing its best to improve public services.”

The Gawad Pamana ng Lahi was awarded to Palawan for its “exemplary performance in local governance.”

Daquer said the screening committee and validators of the said award had been strict in making sure the province has complied with the criteria and qualifications. Palawan, he added, was the highest scorer among all provinces in Mimaropa region.

Aside from receiving the trophy, the province will also receive P3 million from the DILG which it can use to sustain and support programs and projects for development.

The Silver Seal of Good Housekeeping Award, on the other hand, was higher than the 2011 Bronze Seal of Good Housekeeping the province has received.

“This only proves that the provincial government is doing its best to serve the people of Palawan with sound fiscal management, and accountable and transparent governance.” The province will receive P7 million as prize for the award.

Daquer challenged the provincial government and its officials and employees to continue best efforts to administer the province and to implement Full Disclosure Policy, Anti-Red Tape Act, sound fiscal management, transparency and accountability in leadership for the benefit of the Palaweños in 2013.

Palawan Pawnshop, Technosports Boost JR tennis

(The Philippine Star)

MANILA, Philippines - Junior tennis got a major boost as Palawan Pawnshop and Technosports re-affirmed its support to the Philippine Tennis Association (Philta) by co-staging a 27-leg nationwide circuit that will keep the young netters busy all season.

The Philta-Palawan Pawnshop Regional Age-Grouper will fire off Jan. 17-20 in Dumalag, Capiz and will end Dec. 13-17 in Manila, covering the key cities of Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao in the group’s continuing effort to develop the sport and discover talents who could be trained and developed for future national teams.

“It has been our desire to help boost the sport and at the same time tap new talents who can be developed to become world class athletes,” said Bobby Castro, COO of Palawan Pawnshop.

Inspired by the success of their 15-stage tour last year, launched to address the need for a national tournament program for junior tennis, Philta, Palawan Pawnshop and Technosports’ have lined up a year-round circuit also designed as a conduit of Philta in developing a positive outlook among the youth.

“The Philta-Palawan Pawnshop regional age-group series hopes to serve as a venue for junior players to hone their skills and talents and give opportunities to compete against the best,” said Philta president and Parañaque Rep. Edwin Olivarez.

He added that the program is designed to instill the benefits of physical fitness and core values that promote tennis and aid in addressing the problem of juvenile delinquency. Sportshub ( Article MRec ), pagematch: 1, sectionmatch: 1

“By putting up this series of tournaments, we hope to discover talents. There are just too many of them, especially in the countryside,” said Guillermo Nocom, president of Technosports, exclusive distributor of Babolat equipment in the country. “By year’s end, we should be able to identify them and provide the necessary training and exposure.”

The series of tournaments will also provide free clinics and coaches’ workshops for local mentors to be conducted by the national coaches as well as basic officiating seminars.

No new sighting of foreign vessel in West Philippines Sea – WESCOM chief


PUERTO PRINCESA CITY, Jan. 7 (PNA) -– The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Western Command in Palawan clarified that there are no new sightings of alleged navy vessels of the People’s Republic of China in the disputed West Philippines Sea.

In an interview, WesCom chief Lieutenant Gen. Juancho Sabban he said aerial reconnaissance missions conducted by the 570th Composite Tactical Wing (CTW) have not spotted any Chinese patrol ships in the disputed area.

Sabban made the clarification following reports that navy vessels of China were seen in the West Philippines Sea before the closing of 2012.

Last December, China released a statement that it will send patrol vessels in the West Philippines Sea to conduct board-search-and-seizure activities on vessels and other ships that will traverse the area.

The Philippines and other countries using the area as international lane strongly opposed this plan by the Chinese government as in violation of international maritime rights.

Upon the entry of the new year, it was also reported that even the municipal vessel of Kalayaan, MV Queen Seagull, also allegedly experienced harassment from China’s patrol ships.

But Sabban made clear that as of this writing, no Chinese navy vessel have been sighted particularly in the areas being claimed by the country.

Sabban added the Philippine government extended the AFP Modernization Plan for several years longer in order to rehabilitate existing facilities that have been naturally devastated in time, and to construct newer ones to fortify the Philippines’ defense strength in the region.

He expects that the Rancudo airstrip on Pag-Asa Island in the Kalayaan municipality will be repaired and rehabilitated this year. The airstrip, he said, has been used for 40 years and seriously needs restoration.

‘Bising’ may enter PAR on Sunday

(Manila Standard Today)

A NEW low-pressure area moved closer to Mindanao on Saturday and weathermen said it will be named “Bising” if it intensifies into a cyclone.

The state weather bureau said in its 5 p.m. bulletin that the LPA was 1,000 km east of Mindanao as of 2 p.m. and was embedded in the Inter-tropical Convergence Zone.

Weathermen said it was still too far to directly affect any part of the country, but it may bring rain within the next 24 hours.

The Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration also said that while the ITCZ is affecting Mindanao, the northeast monsoon is affecting northern Luzon.

“Eastern Visayas and Mindanao will have cloudy skies with light to moderate rain showers and thunderstorms,” the weather bureau said.

Cagayan Valley will experience cloudy skies with light rain, while Metro Manila and the rest of the country will be partly cloudy with brief rain showers or thunderstorms, it added.

Meanwhile, the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council said a Palawan resident died as Tropical Storm “Auring” exited the Philippine area of responsibility on Friday.

The NDRMMC identified the fatality as Pedro Francisco, 35, of Barangay Iraan in Rizal town, who was died after being hit by an uprooted coconut tree.

As of Saturday morning, the NDRRMC said several roads and bridges across the country were closed and became impassable due to flooding.

Among these are the Malatgao road section in Bataraza, Palawan; the Kalikan, Pinan Bridge in Region 9; and the Katipunan National Highway, and the bridges of Mia Sans Dicayo, Piao and Tangian in Region 11.

Power outages were also reported in Puerto Princesa City, and the towns of Aborlan, Brookes Point and Quezon in Palawan. Several houses in Rizal town were also destroyed by a whirlwind, it added.

The NDRRMC added a flash flood prompted the evacuation of 100 families, or 500 people, in Quezon, Bukidnon to a local basketball court.

Tropical Storm “Auring” was the first cyclone to enter the Philippine area of responsibility this year.

One dies in Palawan, several roads still impassable as 'Auring' exits PHL


MANILA, Jan. 5 (PNA) -- The National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRMMC) on Saturday said that a Palawan resident died as Tropical Storm "Auring" exited the Philippine area of responsibility Friday.

The NDRMMC identified the fatality as Pedro Francisco, 35, of Barangay Iraan in Rizal town.

The NDRMMC said Francisco died after being hit by an uprooted coconut tree.

AS of Saturday morning, the NDRRMC said several roads and bridges across the country were closed and became impassable due to flooding.

Among these are the Malatgao road section in Bataraza, Palawan; the Kalikan, Pinan Bridge in Region 9; and theKatipunan National Highway, and the bridges of Mia Sans Dicayo, Piao and Tangian in Region 11.

Power outages were also reported in Puerto Princesa City, and the towns of Aborlan, Brookes Point and Quezon in Palawan. Several houses in Rizal town were also destroyed by a whirlwind, it added.

The NDRRMC added a flash flood prompted the evacuation of 100 families or 500 people in Quezon, Bukidnon to a local basketball court.

Tropical Storm "Auring" was the first cyclone to enter the Philippine area of responsibility this year.

Tropical storm Auring in southern Palawan, to exit Friday –- PAGASA


MANILA, Jan. 4 (PNA) -- Tropical Depression “Auring” has intensified into a tropical storm as it made landfall in the southern tip of Palawan on Friday morning, the state weather bureau said.

Weather Forecaster Ricky Fabregas said that as of 5 a.m., tropical storm Auring was spotted at 220 kilometers southwest of Puerto Princesa City (8.6°N, 117.0°E) packing maximum winds of 65 kph near the center and gustiness of up to 80 kph.

Fabregas said Auring is maintaining its speed and direction as it moves westward at 28 kph and expected to be out in Philippine Area of Responsibility (PAR) by Friday morning or afternoon.

“Kaninang 4 a.m. nag-landfall si Auring at sa bilis ng pagkilos nito inaasahan natin ito lalabas ng PAR by 11 a.m. today or 1 p.m. But we still continue our monitoring,” he explained.

The Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) said that public storm warning signal no. 2 (winds of 61-80 kph) was raised over southern Palawan while signal no.1 (winds of 30-60 kph) over the rest of Palawan.

Tropical storm “Auring” will bring 10-20 mm of rains per hour (heavy-intense) within its 300-km diameter, PAGASA said.

PAGASA is advising residents living in low lying and mountainous areas under public storm warning signal 2 and 1 to be on alert against possible flash floods and landslides.

Likewise, those living in coastal areas under public storm warning signal 2 are alerted against big waves or storm surges generated by the tropical cyclone.

The weather bureau warned fishing boats and other small sea craft against venturing out “into the seaboards of Northern and Central Luzon and the western seaboards of Southern Luzon due to the northeast monsoon.

Auring is expected to be at 470 km southwest of Puerto Princesa City or outside the PAR by Friday afternoon.

Fabregas added that as Auring continues to move out of the PAR, some parts of Luzon including Metro Manila will experience light rains due to the northeast monsoon enhanced by the tropical storm.

In its advisory, PAGASA said Southern Palawan will experience stormy weather while the rest of Palawan will have rains and gusty winds.

Meanwhile Visayas, Mindanao and Calabarzon (Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal and Quezon) will be cloudy with moderate to heavy rainshowers and thunderstorms. Cagayan Valley and the province of Aurora, Metro Manila and the rest of the country will experience cloudy skies with light to moderate rainshowers and thunderstorms.

Meanwhile, Fabregas said they have spotted a new cloud cluster over the Pacific Ocean that may become another LPA.

Fabregas said the cloud cluster is expected to enter the country next week but, even if it enters PAR, “it would not directly affect us yet since it is still too far."

DOST – Set-Up assists 9 MSMEs in Palawan

By Victoria Asuncion S. Mendoza (VSM/TBO-PIA 4B, Palawan)

PUERTO PRINCESA CITY, Palawan, Jan. 3 (PIA) -- Brick-making, native drum manufacturing, and food processing are just some of the businesses that received a boost in production under the Small Enterprise Technology Upgrading Program (Set-Up) of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) in Palawan.

Nine micro-, small-, medium-, enterprises (MSMEs) in Palawan benefited from the Set-Up with assistance ranging from P72,000 to P1.9 million for a total of P3.3 million release in 2012.

The most recent assistance was released in December to Gonzaga Machine and Motor Works in Puerto Princesa City for acquisition of high-precision machines valued at P1.95 million. This is also the highest amount approved for a project under Set-Up in Palawan last year.

The next big budget project is the Cashew Processing Enterprise Enhancement Project by the Paraiso Sweets and Delicacies in Puerto Princesa City. Its project cost of P328,000 is intended for upgrading its processing equipment.

The food processing projects approved under Set-Up are primarily to upgrade its equipment to enhance productivity. These are Rojem’s Homemade Candies in Taytay (P72,000); Lina’s Cashew in Roxas (P192,000); JML Homemade Delicacies in Narra (P200,000); Gabuco’s Bakeshop in Puerto Pricnesa City (P203,590); and Yamie’s Food Products in Puerto Princesa City (P187,000).

Non-food projects include Potter’s Hand Ceramic Manufacturer in Roxas given P101,430 assistance for upgrade of its equipment in the making of bricks and pottery. Origin Crafts, maker of percussion instrument and native drums is also a beneficiary with P77,400.

DOST Set-Up is a nationwide strategy to encourage and assist small businesses to adopt technological innovations to improve their operations, and thus boost their productivity and competitiveness.

Under the program, the beneficiary is able to address its technical problem through technology transfer and technological interventions through better product quality, human resources development, cost minimization, waste management, and other operation-related activities.

The financial assistance is payable within three years without interest. There is already a total of 21 project beneficiaries of DOST’s Set-Up in the province.

DOE expects more oil, gas exploration activities

By Neil Jerome C. Morales (The Philippine Star)

MANILA, Philippines - More exploration activities are expected in the country’s upstream oil and petroleum sector this year, a ranking energy official said.

Last year, two wells have been drilled and one ongoing in Cebu. For (this) year, between six to nine wells are prognosed to be drilled,” Department of Energy (DOE) Undersecretary Ramon Allan Oca told reporters.

The DOE earlier targeted 10 to 12 oil and petroleum well drillings last year.

However, most projects were pushed back due to the tight market for drill rigs, which are being contracted by large global firms amid high fuel prices that make upstream energy projects more profitable.

But Oca said drilling works in the country will be robust this year.

In November, upstream oil firms Cadlao Development Co. Ltd. and VenturOil Philippines Inc. allotted $47 million to drill two oil production wells next year that will bring the Cadlao oil field in Northwest Palawan to commercial operations. Business ( Article MRec ), pagematch: 1, sectionmatch: 1

The Cadlao field previously produced up to 11 million barrels of oil back in the 1980s before it was plugged in 1991.

Australia’s Nido Petroleum Ltd. earlier committed to drill one well for Service Contract 63, which covers 1.067 million hectares in offshore Northwest Palawan.

The Philippines is underexplored compared with its Southeast Asian neighbors, which are benefiting from robust investments in the upstream energy sector.

The DOE is pursuing energy independence and sustainability through the development of indigenous energy resources like coal, petroleum and natural gas.

To date, there are 27 service contracts in the Philippines involving Shell Philippines Exploration B.V. and Nido Petroleum. However, only the Malampaya and Galoc oil fields are in regular production.

The Philippines produces only 6,000 barrels of oil daily, way below the demand of around 300,000 barrels per day, DOE data showed.

Coast Guard saves 10 from distressed boat in Busuanga, Palawan


MANILA, Jan. 1 — Coast Guard personnel have successfully rescued ten fishermen from a distressed fishing boat in the vicinity waters of Busuanga Island in Palawan while four others are yet to be rescued.

Investigation made by CGDet Talampulan revealed that around 5:00PM last 25 December when Roberto Alviar, Jun-Jun Dalumpines, Marlo Soriano and Badong Remegio reported that F/B Roxanne Ranger, 2.81GT, skippered by a certain Andres Autrida and owned/operated by Roxanne Combalester, encountered engine trouble at the said area.

Personnel of CGDet Talampulan immediately organized a search and rescue operation onboard borrowed M/Bca Lemuel owned/operated by Edwin San Jose of Barangay Talampulan, Busuanga, Palawan. Due to unfavorable weather condition, the team decided to return back to proper station and will continue search and rescue operations if weather permits.

F/B Roxanne Ranger with ten identified fishermen onboard namely: Andres Autida, Boat Captain, 44; Dante Rustia, 32; Allan Basnig, 24; Ramil Basnig, 24; Danilo Veracis, 37; Jonas Autida, 18; Jose Chekito, 53; Ian Sambat, 18; Jushua Sambat, 17; and Roy Cabilan, 38 was towed by F/B Ricky Roy with 7.29 GT/4.96 NT owned/operated by Rolando Gomez of Barangay Dinahican, Infanta, Quezon skippered by Rolito Maata on 26 December.

Said fishing banca and the ten fishermen onboard safely arrived at Barangay Talampulan, Busuanga, Palawan all are in good physical condition.

Further inquiry disclosed that subject vessel departed Barangay Dinahican, Infanta, Quezon last 9 November. Four fishermen onboard fishing banca remains anchored at said area awaiting for possible rescue.