TODAY'S HEADLINES

China building South China Sea island big enough for airstrip: report 22-Nov-14, 3:25 AM | David Brunnstrom, Reuters

6.2 quake hits central Japan, flattens houses 23-Nov-14, 1:05 AM | Agence France-Presse

IS kills at least 23 Iraqi tribesmen near Ramadi 23-Nov-14, 12:30 AM | Agence France-Presse

5.9 magnitude quake hits China's Sichuan 23-Nov-14, 1:49 AM | Agence France-Presse

Somalia's al Shabaab kill 28 non-Muslims in Kenya bus attack 22-Nov-14, 9:34 PM | George Obulutsa, Reuters

Opinion

COCKTALES | PAL starts flying to London Nov. 4, undercuts competition out of Mla

InterAksyon.com
The online news portal of TV5

>Philippine Airlines will resume flying to London on November 4, landing at the coveted Heathrow instead of Gatwick as earlier announced.

The flag carrier has yet to make the official announcement or allow bookings on its website as of this writing, but already a number of industry websites have not only broken the news but have even already listed the flight schedules and fares.

PAL will be fielding its new Boeing 777-300ER planes to the UK destination five times a week with varying schedules, with the non-stop flight taking under 13 hours to London and under 14 hours, against the headwinds, to Manila.

The website skyscanner.com is already quoting an inaugural November 4 economy class fare out of Manila, with a return leg on November 11, for P45,006. This represents a P13,000-savings compared to Cathay Pacific's P58,000-plus fare for the same dates, not to mention the longer travel time through Cathay because of the carrier's stopover in its home base in Hong Kong.

The Chinese carrier, on the other hand, is fighting back the PAL initiative by offering a cheaper fare out of London for the same dates, according toskyscanner.com, a website that compares online fares.

A London-Manila-London fare on the same dates can be had for as low as P39,363 in Cathay Pacific, a hefty P17,000 cheaper than the P66,971 offered by PAL.

Flights through Malaysia Airlines, which stops over in Kuala Lumpur for the 19-hour journey, quotes a P48,000-fare range for the same departure dates either way, five hours longer and P3,000 more expensive out of Manila.

Jollibee CEO cashes out P152 M in 9/11 special

Jollibee president Tony Tancaktiong cashed out over P152 million in personal shareholdings in the fast-food giant on September 11 without waiting for the P2-a-share special dividend to be handed out to fellow shareholders as of September 19 record date.

The P152-million windfall is on top of the P50 million worth of Jollibee shares Tancaktiong sold mid-year as the fastfood empire he helped nurture celebrated its 20th year of listing at the Philippine Stock Exchange.

Despite the disposals, the 63-year-old chief executive still has 14,368,193 Jollibee shares to his name, a pile worth over P2.4 billion as of Friday close.

A day earlier, Jollibee chief finance officer Ysmael Baysa executed the boardroom version of hamburger flip when he turned around and sold for P167.65 each all the 62,165 in stock options that he received that same day for P32.32 a piece--a five-bagger with no cash outlay.

Judge invalidates VAT on condo dues

The condominium and subdivision owners have won the first round in their fight against the imposition of value-added tax on association dues.

Makati Regional Trial Court Judge Encarnacion Jaja Moya ruled last week that the VAT circular was "invalidly issued" by Revenue Commissioner Kim Jacinto-Henares in late 2012 for "failing to accord...due notice and opportunity (for the taxpayers) to be heard."

The declaratory relief was sought by First e-Bank Tower Condominium Corp. on Paseo de Roxas, represented by Victorio Amante.

"The (BIR) circular did not only clarify an existing law, but changes its import and interpretation that in so doing it prejudices the right of the petitioner as a tax payer," Judge Moya said, quoting previous Supreme Court rulings on higher tax and customs rates.

Despite having trounced the tough Henares in the first legal skirmish, the Tax Management Association of the Philippines was subdued in its celebratory statement, apparently projecting a long litigation that could take a decade and reach up to the Supreme Court.

"This is another victory for the taxpayers," the group said. "Of course, it is expected that the BIR will file a motion for reconsideration on this decision."

Canada a haven for Filipino fugitives

The National Bureau of Investigation's request for the Department of Justice to seek the extradition of a Filipino fugitive wanted for the fraudulent encashment of P538 million of checks for the Bureau of Customs has been languishing for a year and a half now in the desk of Chief State Counsel Ricardo Paras III.

The NBI documents identified the wanted man as Arnulfo D. Cabalza, with the Interpol saying it had already traced him as having relocated to a suburb of Toronto, Canada.

There is in fact a web listing of a man with the same name and middle initial as working for Toronto Hyundai.

According to the pro-DOJ grapevine, the Philippines has had zero success rate in its extradition request to the North American nation, even with such high-profile fugitives as Dewey Dee, Rodolfo Pacificador and couple Faustino and Gloria Chingkoe, that Paras is not keen in pushing for another diplomatic request, only to chalk up another failure for his department.

Heard through the grapevine

Inquirer chairman Marixi Prieto has lost an P8,000 consignation case she filed against her friend, the late Maria Elena Posadas of Posadas Village fame, for failing to deposit the amount to the court.

The amount was supposed to represent the balance for a plot of land that the Prieto family purchased from Posadas in 1997. Prieto allegedly unilaterally offset the balance due from her, about P200,000, by in turn paying for the association dues, real estate taxes and other related expenses of a condo unit that Posadas had acquired from Prieto.

The condo was later occupied by Posadas's estranged husband, prompting Posadas and her heirs to reject the offset arrangement.

E-mail: cocktales_tv5@yahoo.com

 

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