May 2021

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EY Ripples volunteers from SGV were recognized at the JA Philippines (JAPI) awarding ceremony held last 4 May for volunteering as mentors during the JA Business Skills Pass program. SGV Chairman and Country Managing Partner Wilson P. Tan (WPT) and EY Ripples Head for the Philippines and Assurance Partner Christine G. Vallejo (CGV) represented the Firm as the program’s sponsor.  Co-organized by SGV and JAPI, the JA Business Skills Pass program allows senior high school students to create registered mini companies and gives SGV volunteers the opportunity to mentor them by providing insights on accounting, raising capital, marketing and selling their products. Once their plans are executed, the students will sell their products in an online marketplace managed by JA and will compete for the title of Best Company. Two group winners will then be sent to represent the country to compete in the Asia-Pacific finals for the JA Asia Pacific Company of the Year Award. WPT and CGV at the awarding ceremonyList of EY Ripples Volunteers for the JA Business Skills Pass program  Martin Guantes Rossana Fajardo Christine Vallejo  Maria Pilar Hernandez Allan Ocho Shane Dave Tanguin Ailyn Santiago Veronica Arce-Balisi Alexander Bughaw Jamie Uy Alma Angeli Placido Jennifer Jeanne Uyking   Alyssa Binongcal Jobelle Castillo Arjay Louis Bautista Kevin Dominic Garcia Betheena Dizon Kristine Camille Maghirang Catherine Chua Loubelle Mendoza Charmaine Joy De Leon Richard Ragragio Cora Marie Gonzales  Samantha Mabalot Crystal Aleli Cornell Van Ancla Em Araceli Reyes Vhilan Onato Francis Patrick Lim Xandra Jizelle Reyes Glenda Anisco-Niño Jahaziel Mark Bahan  EY Ripples is a global corporate responsibility program that provides EY professionals with opportunities to use their knowledge, skills and experience to positively impact millions of lives by working with impact entrepreneurs and supporting the next generation to develop mindsets and skills to find and sustain meaningful work.
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SGV Chairman and Country Managing Partner Wilson P. Tan (WPT), Talent Leader Julie O. Mateo (JOM) and Business Consulting Partner Conrad Allan M. Alviz (CMA) were among the speakers at EXCEED 2021 hosted by the Junior Philippine Institute of Accountants - De La Salle University Chapter (JPIA - DLSU). Over 6,000 accountancy and business students from different universities attended the convention, which featured sessions on the theme Reshaping Business Dynamics, Catalyzing Post Pandemic Nation Building.  WPT with the hosts of the plenary sessionWPT was part of a plenary session on resiliency in accountancy. He discussed how SGV prepared for the pandemic and adjusted to the new normal. He also spoke on the future of the accountancy profession and encouraged participants to embrace emerging technologies and prepare for a technologically enhanced finance function. He then explained the CPA Purpose in times of uncertainty and shared that, “to be a CPA isn’t just about auditing books or doing taxes — now more than ever, it’s about helping today’s organizations navigate through uncertainty and execute plans for sustained, long-term growth.”  JOM presenting at the eventAfterwards, JOM led one of the event’s simultaneous classes and shared how SGV’s Purpose has helped the Firm and its people manage the challenges of the pandemic. She discussed how SGV has adapted to the new normal through flexible work policies, health and safety protocols, and continuous virtual Talent initiatives that encourage employee engagement and diversity and inclusiveness. She then encouraged participants to work with organizations whose Purpose aligns with their personal purpose.  CMA (second row, fourth from left) with participants at the event CMA, the current NFJPIA National Adviser, also joined the event’s Symposium where speakers discussed the evolving role of business students. He delivered the closing remarks and emphasized the significant role accountants play in shaping the future of the country. 
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Financial Services Organization (FSO) Consulting Partner and Government and Public Sector Leader Christian G. Lauron (CGL), Senior Director Anchor Asistin, Director Aeron Ramos, and Senior Associate Melle Tengco were speakers at the 4th FSO Banking and Capital Markets (BCM) webinar titled Trusted Intelligence: Model Management of the Future, Bias and Fairness on 7 May. Over 230 chief risk officers, risk management specialists, model development and validation specialists and auditors from the banking, insurance, consumer and retail, and real estate industries attended the webinar. FSO Partner Veronica A. Balisi (VAB) and Tax Partner Margarita D. Mallari-Acaban (MDM) also attended the webinar. Anchor, Aeron, and Melle with VAB and MDM  and other participants at the webinarThe speakers discussed developments, advantages, and challenges in the adoption of Artificial Intelligence (AI)-based models. They shared strategies and approaches that financial institutions can consider in the incorporation and enhancement of model risk management, trust in AI, and the consideration of bias and fairness in business operations. They also highlighted the impact of evolving regulatory expectations and the progression of trust and reliance on technology and AI. They then presented a demo on bias and fairness in AI and machine learning.  The session was followed by an open forum where the speakers addressed the participants’ questions. FSO Senior Director Glaiza Escaño hosted the webinar and Senior Director Mary Catherine Biliran, Senior Associate Maureen Bautista, and Associates David Rodriguez, Abegail Verdadero, and Ronnie Añasco were part of the webinar’s organizing team. 
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The Philippine American Chamber of Commerce, Inc. (PACC), in cooperation with the Philippine Consulate General in New York and the Philippine Department of Trade and Industry, conducted a three-part webinar series on Philippine investment opportunities and tax developments. Tax Partner Margaux A. Advincula (MAA), who managed the EY Philippines Tax Desk in 2016 in EY New York, was the moderator and speaker at the first session titled Investment opportunities in Clark, Subic, and Bataan on 12 May.   MAA presenting with the other resource speakers at the webinarPACC President Aureo A. Sales and Consul General of the Philippines in New York Hon. Elmer G. Cato delivered the opening remarks. Executive Director of the Subic-Clark Alliance for Development, Atty. Carminda Z. Fabros then provided an overview of the Subic-Clark-Bataan Corridor.  President and Chief Executive Officer of the Clark Development Corporation PBGen. Manuel R. Gaerlan and Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority Chairman and Administrator Atty. Wilma T. Eisma then discussed the investment opportunities and major plans and projects in Clark and Subic, respectively. They presented relevant statistical data for investors such as the present locators and cost of doing business in Clark and Subic, as well as each area’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Members of the SGV webinar organizing team with the PACC officersAfterwards, MAA discussed the profile of the Freeport Area of Bataan (FAB), investment opportunities, and the major plans and projects of the FAB. She also explained the salient fiscal and non-fiscal incentives provided to investors in Clark, Subic and Bataan, particularly the impact of the recent rationalization of fiscal incentives under the Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises (CREATE) Act. MAA also moderated the webinar’s open forum where the speakers addressed participants’ questions.  PACC Executive Director Ledy Almadin was also present at the event. The webinar’s organizing team included current EY Philippines Tax Desk Senior Manager Michelle Arias, former Tax Desk Senior Manager Betheena Dizon, and Senior Associates Maria Clara Theresa David and Albertson Otchengco. 
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The SGV Consulting Team conducted a webinar titled Data Security and Privacy in the E-commerce Era on 13 May. Hosted by the University of San Jose - Recoletos (USJR), the event was attended by 500 students from the USJR School of Business and Management and over 300 internal audit, risk management, and compliance professionals.  Nixon, John, Alvin and Joyce with the moderators of the webinarTechnology Consulting Director Nixon Garais led the first session where he discussed the cyber and privacy risks and digital disruptions in e-commerce, particularly those that occur across the retail ecosystem. He then provided tips on how to effectively manage these risks. Technology Consulting Senior Director Alvin Manuel, Associate Director John Panes and Senior Associate Joyce Anne Umali discussed digital transformation and how to build a career in technology. They recounted their experiences at university and shared how these shaped their interest and passion in technology.  Elvin presenting at the webinarBusiness Consulting Senior Director and ISACA Manila Director Elvin Mercader wrapped up the session with a brief overview of ISACA, its purpose, relevant certifications, and support for the academe. ISACA Manila is a professional organization composed of information security, assurance, risk management and governance professionals.  
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Tax Partner Sonia D. Segovia (SDS) was the Chair of the 2021 Philippine Institute of Certified Public Accountants Metro Manila Region-Geographical Area Office (PICPA MMR-GAO) and Association of Certified Public Accountants in Public Practice (ACPAPP) Joint Tax Summit held on 6-7 May. With the theme Navigating the Economic and Tax Development – Now and Beyond COVID-19 Pandemic, the event included sessions on tax transformation programs, local tax updates, and economic forecasts.  The summit kicked off with a session on BIR digitalization and tax transformation programs led by BIR Deputy Commissioner of the Information System Group Hon. Lanee C. David. Keynote Speaker and Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Deputy Governor Hon. Francisco G. Dakila Jr. talked about the economic recovery plans and programs of the BSP. PICPA Southern Metro Manila Chapter President and Tax Partner Maricris U. See (MUS) introduced Dr. Alvin P. Ang, Director of the Ateneo Center for Economics Research and Development, who gave a lecture on the economic review and forecast for 2021. The question-and-answer session following the lecture was also moderated by MUS. SDS, MUS, Mike, MAA and Don Don presenting at the webinarThe Summit’s 2nd day began with a town hall session on tax updates and reforms in the local tax landscape led by Deputy Executive Director of the Bureau of Local Government Finance Hon. Jose Arnold M. Tan with panel reactors composed of representatives from the Treasurer’s Offices in Local Government Units in Manila, Cebu, and Davao.  Afterwards, SGV Tax Senior Director and Joint Tax Summit Co-Chairman Mike Madlangbayan introduced Tax Partner Margaux A. Advincula (MAA), who moderated a session on the newly legislated Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises (CREATE) Act with the BIR Technical Working Group. MAA presented the salient points of the Act, particularly the proposed adjustments on corporate tax and other taxes as well as the rationalization of fiscal incentives. MAA, BIR Assistant Commissioner for Legal Services Hon. Larry M. Barcelo, and BIR Assistant Commissioner for Project Management and Implementation Services Hon. Elenita B. Quimosing then conducted an open forum and addressed participants’ questions.  ACPAPP Chairman of the Tax and Advisory Committee and SGV Tax Senior Director Don Don T. Mojica delivered the closing remarks of the Summit and emphasized the importance of staying updated on the latest tax and economic developments. 
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MAA speaks about BIR Audit in PICPA webinar  Tax Partner Margaux A. Advincula (MAA) led a webinar titled BIR Audit amidst a Pandemic for members of the Philippine Institute of Certified Public Accountants – Western Metro Manila Chapter (PICPA-WMMC) on 13 May. The webinar was moderated by Assurance Partner and PICPA-WMMC VP of Professional Development Ma. Emilita L. Villanueva (ELV).  MAA and ELV speaking at the webinarMAA began the session with an overview of the BIR Collection Targets and current priority programs. She discussed the tax audit process and highlighted important principles and recent updates governing tax audits. She also shared insights in handling a BIR Audit. The webinar’s organizing team was led by ELV and MAA with Tax Senior Associates Maria Clara Theresa David and Albertson Otchengco.  MAA leads IBP Pampanga and TSU webinar  The Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP) Pampanga Chapter and Tarlac State University – School of Law (TSU) conducted a webinar titled Updates on the New Corporate Tax under CREATE Act R.A. 11534 on 5 May. IBP Pampanga Chapter President Atty. Socrates Padua welcomed nearly 300 participants to the webinar, including TSU Dean Atty. Jose Dela Rama, Jr. and TSU law students, IBP Pampanga Chapter members, and accountancy students from Mary the Queen College Pampanga, Inc.  MAA and Clara presenting at the webinarTax Partner Margaux A. Advincula (MAA) and Senior Associate Maria Clara David presented an overview of the Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises (CREATE) Act and the processes it underwent before it was signed into law. They then discussed the Act’s specific provisions, various adjustments in corporate tax and other taxes, and the rationalization of the fiscal incentives available to enterprises. MAA and Clara then led a Q&A portion where they addressed the participants’ questions. IBP Pampanga Chapter Member Atty. Hendrix Bongalon delivered the closing remarks.  
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MAA leads AmCham North Luzon webinar Tax Partner Margaux A. Advincula (MAA) led a webinar titled The road to recovery: CREATE and its impact on MSMEs for member companies of the American Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines (AmCham) last 7 April. Participants included representatives of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in North and Central Luzon. MAA covered the salient provisions of the Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises (CREATE) Act and its impact on MSMEs. She began the session with an overview of MSMEs, particularly their qualifications, governing laws, and impact on the economy. Afterward, she discussed the Act’s various adjustments in corporate tax and other taxes, and the rationalization of the fiscal incentives available to enterprises. The webinar concluded with a Q&A portion facilitated by AmCham North Luzon Board member Krizia Tranquilino. AmCham Philippines Executive Director Ebb Hinchliffe, AmCham North Luzon President Dr. Francisco Villanueva, Jr. and Board members Evelyn Yumul and Robert Siebert also participated in the webinar. The webinar’s organizing team included Tax Senior Associates Albertson Otchengco, Verlin Entena, Maria Clara David, and John Marti Duya, and Associate Zharina Matito.
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Financial Services Organization (FSO) Consulting Partner and Government and Public Sector Leader Christian G. Lauron (CGL), Senior Director Anchor Asistin and Director Aeron Ramos were resource speakers at an online seminar on Model Risk Management and Fairness and Bias in Algorithms. Hosted by the Bankers Institute of the Philippines Inc. (BAIPhil), the webinar was attended by around 50 bank chief risk officers, chief audit executives, model development and validation specialists, auditors, data scientists and analytics officers from BAIPhil member institutions. FSO Consulting Partner Francisco A. Lumbres (FAL) and Senior Director Janice Joy Agati also attended the event. The session focused on the Model Risk Management (MRM) framework and its developments and implications for financial institutions. The resource speakers discussed strategies and approaches that financial institutions can implement for the adoption and enhancement of MRM in their operations, emphasizing the impact of evolving regulatory expectations, availability of big data and new and complex methodologies. They also presented different MRM case studies and shared bias and fairness algorithms, AI governance frameworks, and updates on local regulatory policy direction. The session was followed by an open forum where the speakers addressed participants’ questions. The webinar’s organizing team included FSO Consulting Senior Associate Maureen Bautista and Associates David Rodriguez, Sheena Chua, and Patricia Bernadas.
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SGV Consulting People Advisory Services (PAS) Associate Principal Lisa Marie Escaler was a panelist at the 3rd Annual ASEAN HR Virtual Summit held last 22-23 April. The two-day virtual event gathered business leaders, global entrepreneurs and corporate executives to discuss industry trends and practices, challenges of in-house corporate HR, and expanding HR business partnership roles. The summit also highlighted the latest technologies that affect the work and lives of employees. Lisa, along with two co-panelists, discussed the dynamic HR environment transformed by emerging technologies. They emphasized that the biggest problem with today’s digital employee experience is the inability to fully utilize technology due to insufficient adoption, training and engagement. Lisa shared that “the rise in technological innovations have elevated expectations for all individuals. We know that employees want the same digital experience at work as they have in other aspects of their lives and they want to be able to seamlessly transition from one technology to the next. To ensure a consistent and satisfying user experience, employers will need to place humans@center as they consider which technologies to invest in, adopt and embed within their organizations.”