May 2021

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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.”
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Strategy and Transactions Partner Marie Stephanie Tan-Hamed (MTH) was among the speakers at the Philippine Association of Realty Appraisers, Inc. (PARA) webinar series titled Expanding the Valuation/Appraisal Horizon last 17 April. With the theme Tomorrow’s Real Estate Today, the speakers shared insights on topics relevant to the future of the real estate sector such as Philippine property market updates, property measurement standards, green building and sustainable design, and amending the Anti-Money Laundering Act. MTH led a session on Fair Value – Valuation for Financial Reporting and provided an overview of valuation concepts, appraisal methods, as well as the latest developments in Philippine Financial Reporting Standards (PFRS) on Fair Value Measurement. She then shared insights on how appraisers can properly issue fair value measurements in compliance with PFRS and the requirements on financial statement disclosures.
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The Philippine Franchise Association (PFA) conducted a webinar titled Impact of CREATE to Franchising Businesses on 23 April. PFA Deputy Executive Director Jake Santos hosted the event and PFA Director for Education Alan Escalona welcomed over 80 participants from PFA member companies to the webinar. Tax Partner Cheryl C. Ong (CCO) discussed the salient features of the Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises (CREATE) Act and its corporate tax adjustments. She covered the proposed rationalization of fiscal incentives and other provisions. Afterward, she shared insights on the next steps participants can consider to maximize the incentives under the Act.   The session was followed by a Q&A portion led by CCO and Tax Senior Director Karen Mae Calam-Ibañez. PFA President Sherill Quintana delivered the closing remarks and briefly discussed the value of learning more about how the Act can help franchisers and their businesses manage the challenges of the pandemic. The SGV organizing team was led by EY Private Partner Kristopher S. Catalan, Tax Partner Cheryl Edeline C. Ong, and Senior Directors Felinor G. Pascua and Karen Mae L. Calam.
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Financial Services Organization (FSO) Partner Veronica Mae Arce Balisi (VAB) conducted Session 3 of the Capital Markets and Fixed Income Securities Course for the Financial Executives Institute of the Philippines (FINEX) Academy on 12 April. Over 60 sales, finance, compliance and legal professionals participated in the webinar. Some attended to expand their professional development and others to prepare for their SEC certification exam. VAB discussed the basic concepts of Anti-Money Laundering (AML) and Counter Terrorist Financing (CTF). She provided an overview of global regulators and updates on local AML/CTF regulations, such as the amendments on certain provisions of the 2018 Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) of Republic Act No. 9160, as Amended. She then explained the preventive measures of covered persons/institutions for capital markets and the fixed income securities industry. FSO Associate Lindza Julao facilitated quick knowledge checks after every unit where participants reviewed their learning progress through short quizzes on the concepts discussed.