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Baldoz wants illegal recruiters penalized by death

By Ferdinand G. Patinio, Philippine News Agency MANILA, June 19 -- Outgoing Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) Secretary Rosalinda Baldoz urged President-elect Rodrigo Duterte to consider imposing death penalty to those involved in illegal recruitment activities victimizing aspiring overseas Filipino workers (OFWs). She noted such activities should be regarded as an organized or heinous crime for duping would-be overseas workers.   “Right now, the law already provides the highest penalty of life imprisonment since it is considered as economic sabotage. So considering illegal recruitment for death penalty could be considered,” Baldoz said. Rule IV, Section 5 of Republic Act No. 10022 provides that the penalty of life imprisonment shall be imposed if illegal recruitment constitutes economic sabotage, wherein a syndicate or a group of three persons or more conspired to commit the …

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Corporate Giveaways Buyers’ Show set June 21-23

The country’s longest-running corporate gifts show, Corporate Giveaways 2016, will showcase thousands of corporate gifts and giveaways, promotional items and creative solutions. The Corporate Giveaways Buyers’ Show, now on its 29th year, will be held on June 21-23 at the SMX Convention Center Manila. Close to a hundred established and  new companies will exhibit their products and services at this three-day buyers’ show dedicated to make the task of gift-sourcing easy, convenient and fun. Admission to Corporate Giveaways 2016 is free (only visitors 18 years old and older will be admitted). Exhibit hours are from 10am to 7pm.  For more information on the show visit www.corporategiveawaysbuyershow.com or contact cg@worldexco.com.  

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Pakistan province allocates $2 million for transgenders

PESHAWAR, Pakistan, June 15, 2016 - A Pakistani province has allocated nearly $2 million for transgenders after a series of violent attacks, with officials saying the money will be used to provide training and support for the vulnerable community. The funds were announced this week in budget plans for Pakistan's northwestern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.   ''The main purpose is to make them contributory members of the society while earning a livelihood for themselves,'' provincial finance minister Muzaffar Sayed told AFP Wednesday. Sayed said 200 million rupees ($2 million) have been allocated ''for the capacity building and skill development of the vulnerable groups''. The move came after a spate of recent attacks against transgenders in the province, culminating in last month's killing of an activist known as Alesha, who was shot multiple times …

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Canada probes reports of hostage killed in Philippines

The Canadian government said Monday it was investigating reports that one of its nationals kidnapped by Islamic militants in the southern Philippines nearly nine months ago had been killed. "The Government of Canada is aware of reports that a Canadian citizen has been executed," the Canadian foreign affairs ministry said in a statement. "We are pursuing all appropriate channels to seek further information and are in close contact with Philippines authorities." Members of the notorious kidnap-for-ransom Abu Sayyaf gang said they would murder Robert Hall if they did not receive 300 million pesos ($6.5 million) ransom by Monday. Hall was among four people abducted in September last year from aboard yachts at a tourist resort in the southern Philippines. Another Canadian who was abducted at the same time, John Ridsdel, was beheaded in April after …

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SAS’ Swedish pilots strike, flights, passengers affected

COPENHAGEN, Denmark — Scandinavian Airlines says its flights operated by Swedish pilots are being canceled because of a strike over a wage increase, meaning nearly 160 flights and some 20,000 passengers are affected Saturday. The Stockholm-based airline said planes with Danish and Norwegian pilots are not affected. The Swedish pilots' union demands a 3.5 percent salary increase while company had offered an overall pay increase of 2.2 percent, according to the Swedish news agency TT. SAS vice president Karin Nyman said in a statement the sides "have unfortunately been unable to come to an agreement." The strike started late Friday. The airline is partly owned by the governments of Sweden, Denmark, and Norway. It's the largest airline in Scandinavia.  

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Expats, employers worried over uncertain Saudi tax proposal

By Angus McDowall and Celine Aswad, Reuters JEDDAH/DUBAI, June 8 - Expatriates in Saudi Arabia and their Saudi employers alike voiced unease about a proposal the government is studying to impose income tax on foreign workers to make up for falling oil revenues. Around a third of the 30 million inhabitants of the world's top oil exporter are foreigners, many of them drawn, despite ultra-conservative social restrictions, by the absence of tax and the lure of salaries higher than they could secure at home.   A National Transformation Plan of economic reforms, released on Monday, said 150 million riyals ($40 million) had been set aside for preparing and implementing tax on expats, but Finance Minister Ibrahim Alassaf said no decision had yet been taken. Still, the news that such a proposal was being …

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Parliament ratifies South Sudan’s admission to EAC

JUBA, May 24 (PNA/Xinhua) -- South Sudan's parliament has endorsed a treaty about the admission of the country to the East Africa Community (EAC), making it the sixth member state of the regional trading bloc. Speaking in parliament late Monday, Philip Thon Leek, chairperson for the Specialized Committee of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, said South Sudan would take advantage of the EAC membership to enhance cooperation, especially trade, with partner states. "Since oil revenues financed more than 90 of the country's budget, regional integration will compel South Sudan to explore other products for export such as gold, gun Africa among others," he said. South Sudan's President Salva Kiir inked the EAC Treaty last week. South Sudan applied to become a member of the EAC in 2011 but it was only in October last …

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SoKor youth jobless rate up 10.9% in April, monthly high

By Seo Dong-cheol and Kim Gyu-sik, Maeil Business News Korea South Korea’s youth jobless rate reached a new monthly high for April, gaining by double digits for the third consecutive month to demand bolder government policy actions in tackling joblessness for the young. According to an April employment data released by the Statistics Korea on Wednesday, the jobless rate for those aged between 15 and 29 was tallied at 10.9 percent in April. Jobless rate among the young has kept up monthly high after reaching all-time high of 12.5 percent in February, followed by 11.8 percent in March, and 10.9 percent in April. The unemployment rate for the youth category stayed at 41.8 percent, way below the overall rate of 60.3 percent in April. The number of the employed last month increased 252,000 from the …

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Philippine markets gain after elections

By Cris Larano, Dow Jones MANILA -- Philippine financial markets rose Tuesday as election results suggested a strong mandate for the presumptive next president in one of the world's fastest-growing economies.   Some fund managers and economists said they believed the market could advance further after Rodrigo Duterte names members of his economic team and provides other details about his plans for the government. Since early April -- when Mr. Duterte, the mayor of Davao City, took the lead in polling -- Philippine shares had fallen and the peso had steadily weakened against the dollar. On Tuesday, however, as the unofficial count showed Mr. Duterte leading his closest rival by more than six million votes, the equities market and the peso shrugged off early weakness. The stock market's benchmark PSEi closed 2.6% higher at …

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Survey: US businesses add jobs at slowest pace in 3 years

By Christopher S. Rugaber, AP Economics Writer WASHINGTON — U.S. companies added jobs at the slowest pace in three years in April, a private survey found; a sign that slower growth and volatile financial markets could be weighing on hiring. Payroll processor ADP said Wednesday that businesses added 156,000 jobs in April, down from 194,000 in March. Manufacturers shed 11,000 jobs, after losing 3,000 the previous month. Services firms added 166,000, down from 189,000. The slowdown was also driven by weaker hiring at medium and larger companies. Small businesses added jobs at the same pace as previous months. The economy barely expanded in the first three months of the year, growing just 0.5 percent at an annual rate, the weakest showing in two years. Stock prices, meanwhile, fell 15 percent at the beginning of the year, …

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