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Ai Ballesteros

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Ai Ballesteros studied Journalism at a state university in the Philippines, currently working as a writer. For years, she has been writing about metropolis, politics, and business issues. Apart from writing, Ai also loves to travel.

Philippines receives $2.5B loan from ADB

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has lent some $2.5 billion support to the Philippines, the highest ever extended in a single year. On Friday, the ADB and the Philippine government through the Department of Finance have signed a loan agreement worth $623 million that brought...

Masatsugu Asakawa is new ADB head

Masatsugu Asakawa is the new president of the Asian Development Bank (ADB). Asakawa, who is currently serving as a special advisor to Japan’s prime minister and finance minister, was elected by the bank’s board of governors via unanimous decision on Monday. He will assume office...

The rapidly-changing aviation industry

It’s mixed emotions for the global aviation industry as the emergence of low-cost carriers has taken its toll on major legacy airlines that have once dominated the industry. Over a short period of time, not fewer than 24 airlines have come and gone as casualties...

Our farmers deserve a ‘Merry Christmas’ too

December has come—my favorite month. By this time, we would have started hearing the songs of Christmas and feeling that excitement of buying gifts whose prices were put on a huge discount. I am unsure about the other countries, but in the Philippines, you...

Thailand tightens visa requirements for Taiwanese nationals

Thailand is set to tighten this month the requirements in obtaining visas for Taiwanese nationals. Late last month, the Thailand Trade and Economic Office in Taipei said that it is making visa applications and payment systems electronic beginning December 2019 for those holding a Republic...

Thailand, Hong Kong eye free-trade deal

Thailand is planning to seal a free-trade agreement (FTA) with Hong Kong, particularly in areas of services, cyber security, and green financing. Deputy secretary-general to the prime minister for political affairs Kobsak Pootrakool said that the two countries—through the Hong Kong-Thailand High-Level Joint Committee (HLJC)—have...

Philippines prepares for world-class airport

The Philippines is set to get its own world-class gateway after the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) on Friday cleared the consortium’s proposal to revamp the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA). The NEDA’s green light was the last approval that needed to be obtained...

Cambodia eyes more revenues from customs, excise taxes

Cambodia is looking at raising its revenue target by over 20 percent next year, with the boost expected to come from higher customs and excise tax collections. The government said on Tuesday it is targeting to hit a 28.1-percent increase in revenue collection next year,...

Thailand cross-border trade dips 2% to 1.12T baht

Thailand saw its cross-border trade dip by nearly 2 percent during the first 10 months of the year on account of various factors which include a global economic slowdown. The Commerce Ministry’s Foreign Trade Department reported on Thursday that cross-border trade declined by 1.94 percent...

Accusation of China’s control over Philippines’ power grid ‘baseless’

China has dismissed fears that it can allegedly control the Philippines’ power grid, saying that the latter’s accusations were “baseless.” Speaking at a news briefing in Beijing on Wednesday, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang dismissed fears that China is a threat to the Philippines’...

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Philippines receives $2.5B loan from ADB

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has lent some $2.5 billion support to the Philippines, the highest ever extended in a single year. On Friday, the...

Philippine central bank pauses rate cuts on benign inflation

The Philippine central bank on Thursday held interest rates steady at its last monetary policy meeting for the year due to a positive domestic...

Asean’s plastic shame 

Asean’s beaches, seas and waterways continue to choke on plastic waste, with much of it imported from the developed world. Idyllic spots throughout the biodiverse...