Ongoing Tax Briefings on PCA and PDP

The Indirect Tax Sub-service Line (SSL) of the SGV Tax Services Group hosted the first of a series of tax briefings to clients last 29 January. The briefings cover Post Clearance Audit (PCA) and the Prior Disclosure Program (PDP) pursuant to Customs Administrative Order No. 1-2019.

The briefings aim to provide updated information on the new Bureau of Customs (BOC) audit procedure and remedies of the importers to contest the findings of the BOC, as well as guidelines on how to prepare for a customs audit.

Session speakers include SGV Tax Principals Lucil Vicerra, Stephanie Nava and Victor De Dios, and Senior Director Arlyn Sarmiento-Sy. Representatives from various sectors such as manufacturing, power, mining, real estate and construction, transportation, public utilities, media and entertainment, and traders and distributors were present during the briefing.

The briefings will run until 15 February 2019. For more information and for the full schedule of the succeeding briefings, please email: or

The Indirect Tax SSL will also conduct a separate public seminar on 19 February 2019 (1:00 pm – 5:00 pm) at the New World Makati Hotel. For more information, please email: or call TL: (632)891-0307 local 7253, DL: (632)978-7253, or mobile no. (+63)917-327-7253; or you may visit

TAS Senior Associates certified!

Transaction Advisory Services (TAS) Senior Associates Aimee Dapon and Patricia Aira Lao recently passed the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) Level I examination. They are now one step closer to completing the CFA program.

Offered by the CFA Institute, the CFA credential is the standard of choice for investment professionals with real-world analytical skills, technical competence and high ethical and professional standards. Level I tests a candidate’s knowledge and comprehension of investment tools, while Level II focuses on application of these tools and analysis for asset valuation. Level III is the synthesis and evaluation of all the learnings in the portfolio management context.

Congratulations, Aimee and Pat!

FSRM professionals pass certification exams

Staff from the Financial Services and Risk Management (FSRM) Group recently passed the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) Level 1, 2 and 3 exams, Certified Management Accountant (CMA) Level 1 and 2 exams, Financial Risk Manager (FRM) Level 1 and 2 exams, and Society of Actuaries (SOA) Financial Mathematics (FM/2) and Probability (P/1) exams.

FSRM was established in 1998 as the Derivatives and Treasury Risk Management team. It has since continued to expand and recruit highly competent professionals who contribute to the team’s commitment to be the leader in providing quantitative, modelling and computational and data science advisory services in the region.

CFA exam passers:

Level 3:
· John Russel S. Torsiende – Director
· Saldy C. Cabarubias – Director

Level 2:
· Carlo Antonio M. Espiritu – Senior Associate
· John Zigmund S. Lozanes – Senior Associate
· Juno F. Fragante – Senior Associate
· Nehemiah M. Roberto – Senior Associate

Level 1:
· Abner E. Serania – Senior Associate
· Ana Teresa B. Joaquin – Senior Associate
· Marcus Lawrence L. Que – Senior Associate
· Ellice Biel E. Adornado – Associate

To learn more about the CFA Program, click on this link.

CMA exam passer: Simeon Hosea C. Limbo – Senior Associate; Levels 1 and 2

To know more about the CMA Program, click on this link.

Level 2 FRM exam passers:
· Aeron Paul A. Ramos – Director
· Alvin H. Francisco – Senior Associate
· Phoebe Joycelle R. Rocimo – Senior Associate
· Ian Christopher M. Mauhay – Associate

To learn more about the FRM Program, click on this link.

SOA exam passers:

Exam FM/2:
· Mark Camilo C. Mamaril – Associate
· Vincent Kester C. De Joya – Associate

Exam P/1:
· Francis James M. Verayo – Associate
· Genette Yna P. Rendoque – Associate
· Mariah Denise S. Carumba – Associate
· Mark Camilo C. Mamaril – Associate
· Norlan A. Dazo – Associate
· Wendell S. Caramat – Associate

For more information on the SOA and their programs, click on this link.

Congratulations to all who hurdled and passed the exams!

TAS professionals earn FMI certifications

Transaction Advisory Services (TAS) Senior Director Smith Lim recently passed the global Level 2 Chartered Financial Modeler (CFM) exam. Meanwhile, TAS Senior Associates Aimee Dapon and Francis Patrick Lim and TAS Associate Nadia Kristina M. Ona passed the global Level 1 Advanced Financial Modeler (AFM) exam. All four now hold their respective designations as certified by the Financial Modeling Institute (FMI).

As the first of three certification levels offered by the FMI, the AFM exam covers financial model layout and best practices, intermediate-to-advanced Microsoft Excel skills, scenario analysis, accounting fundamentals and model schedules. The

Level 2 CFM exam touches on complex modeling topics and certifies thorough understanding of financial modeling, financial analysis and advanced Microsoft Excel.

Kudos to Smith, Aimee, Patrick and Nadj!

Partners speak in the PICPA’s 73rd ANC

SGV Partners shared their knowledge during the 73rd Annual National Convention (ANC) of the Philippine Institute of Certified Public Accountants (PICPA) held at the SMX Convention Center in Bacolod City. The ANC had for its theme: Promoting Integrity. Advancing Excellence.

The three-day convention featured several sectoral forums and technical sessions. During the sectoral forum for Commerce and Industry, Advisory Head Rossana Fajardo discussed The Future of Finance, while Advisory Partner Allan Ocho talked about Teaching Technical IT Courses in the Classroom during the forum for Education.

In the first technical session, Advisory Partner and EY ASEAN Risk Management Leader Leonardo Matignas, Jr. moderated the roundtable discussion on Digitization of the Profession, while Tax Partner Lee Vivas spoke about Digital Tax. Assurance Partner John Villa discussed New Standards on Leases in the second technical session.

Chairman and Managing Partner Itos Cruz discussed The Future of Accounting during the sixth technical session. He was later presented with the Outstanding CPA in Public Practice award during the convention. Assurance Partner Peter Ventura was recognized as Young Achiever in Public Practice.

Also in attendance at the convention were: Vice Chairman and Deputy Managing Partner Wilson Tan; SGV Bacolod Partner-in-Charge Cyril Valencia; Country Leader for Global Compliance and Reporting Henry Tan; Tax Partners Sonia Segovia,

Kiko Ricamora and Leo Leaño; Assurance Partners Dolly Miguel, Peter Ventura and Meynard Bonoen; and Senior Directors Maricris See, Joanne Cobacha, Mike Madlangbayan and Cliff Narag.

To learn more about PICPA, go to:

MG 11 occupies newly renovated offices

Market Group 11, comprising lawyers of SGV’s Tax Services, is now housed in offices on the 6th floor of both SGV buildings. An office blessing took place last 15 January led by the Rev. Fr. Boogie Tacdoro, SSP with Chairman and Managing Partner Itos Cruz, Tax Services Head Luis Ferrer and Co-head Fame delos Santos.

According to Tax Head Louie Ferrer, MG 11 was formed to bring together lawyers (partners, principals and their respective clusters) for enhanced coordination and teaming. The Tax partners and principals now located on the 6th floor are Marga Mallari-Acaban, Rubina Aquino, Romy Danao, Victor De Dios, Din Marco-Go, TL Guanzon, Rey Marcelo, Stef Nava, Cheryl Ong, Fidela Isip-Reyes, Jules Riego, Jong Vergara and Lucil Vicerra.

FIR recognized as one of the Women in Tax Leaders for 2018

SGV Tax Partner Fidela Isip-Reyes (FIR) was recognized as one of the world’s leading female tax practitioners in the 2018 Women in Tax Leaders guide of the International Tax Review (ITR). Contenders were nominated by leading professionals, in their own and international markets, receiving multiple recommendations as trusted advisors who perform strongest in their field. The list of awardees comprises 900 professionals from all over the world, and FIR is one among three from the Philippines.

FIR was recognized for her exceptional performance as one of the market leaders in tax. She is SGV’s International Tax Services Core and Incentives Advisory Leader. She is a CPA-Lawyer with more than 20 years of experience in providing Philippine tax services for corporate organizations and reorganizations in various industries. FIR has assisted various foreign corporations in engaging in trade and business in the Philippines. She is also an experienced tax advisor with broad knowledge in work involving cross-border transactions, inbound and outbound investments, and structuring of local and foreign investments focusing on Philippine tax implications and maximization of applicable incentives.

The ITR is a monthly publication providing up-to-date tax news, analyses, and resources for tax professionals from various sectors. This is the fourth edition of the Women in Tax Leaders guide published annually by the ITR. The guide has expanded its scope and scale since its first edition in 2015, now reaching out to more than 2,500 tax professionals from around the world.

Congratulations, FIR!

SGV presents EY GISS 2018-19

The SGV CyberSecurity Team recently hosted a presentation on the EY Global Information Security Survey (GISS) 2018-19 last month at the Makati Shangri-La, Makati City. SGV Advisory Partner Warren Bituin (WRB) and EY Asia-Pacific Cyber Leader Richard Watson spoke during the event.

Mr. Watson discussed the results from a global perspective, stating that more organizations are now beginning to recognize the broad nature of cybersecurity threats. He mentioned that over the past year, there has been a growing realization that security is also about maintaining the continuity of business operations. However, the scale and severity of continuously evolving cyber-attacks continue to remain a massive threat.

In his discussion, WRB mentioned that local respondents were unlikely to invest in and improve their cybersecurity measures unless they were to suffer any form of cyber-attack that could have a negative impact on their organizations. However, he also pointed out that more organizations are now increasing their budgets for cybersecurity to improve their defenses and are working on embedding security-by-design.

The event welcomed C-suite business leaders and professionals from various sectors. It served as a venue to discuss the findings of the GISS from a global and local perspective, as well as valuable insights on how organizations can develop effective cybersecurity strategies. This year’s survey included around 1,400 respondents, reflecting the increasing interest in cybersecurity in the business world.

To download a copy of the EY GISS 2018-19, go to: DOWNLOAD LINK

SGV Advisory team conducts VisMin roadshow on Risk Transformation

The SGV Advisory team, with the support of the SGV Davao, Cebu and Cagayan de Oro offices, conducted a series of roadshows in the Visayas and Mindanao regions titled “Identifying and mitigating risks in growing businesses.” The roadshow was held at the Park Inn by Radisson in Davao City, the City Sports Club Cebu in Cebu City, and the Dynasty Court Hotel in Cagayan de Oro.

SGV Risk Advisory Leader and Chief Risk Officer Leonardo J. Matignas, Jr. talked about Enterprise Risk Management (ERM) and Corporate Governance and provided a baseline approach on how ERM can be performed by companies. He discussed corporate governance and explained its regulatory requirements, and provided key updates.

Risk Advisory Partner Allan W. Ocho talked about Third Party Risk Management, introducing it as a function for management to identify, evaluate, monitor and manage risks associated with third parties and contracts. He further explained the different sources and trends of third party risks. He highlighted that third party collaboration has become one of the major accelerants for business transformation.

Senior Directors Paulo Celestino Lastimosa and Aileen Uy talked about Controls Transformation and Program Risk Management, respectively. Also present during the roadshow were Assurance Partners Raoul J. Balisalisa and Alvin M. Pinpin and Tax Partner Cheryl C. Ong.

Attended by owners and executives from local family businesses, the roadshows aimed to increase awareness of Advisory services in the Visayas and Mindanao. It introduced the EY Growth Navigator as SGV’s framework to help clients accelerate growth.

SGV Baguio hosts comprehensive tax seminar

The SGV Global Compliance and Reporting (GCR) Team conducted a one-day tax seminar recently at the Venus Parkview Hotel, Baguio City. The seminar was divided into a morning session led by GCR Partner Leo Leaño (LLL) and an afternoon session led by Business Tax Services Partner Rubina Aquino (RBA). Over 50 participants from various sectors attended the seminar.

LLL’s session titled Closing the Taxable Year: A comprehensive seminar on year-end tax requirements and reconciliation procedures discussed year-end Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) filing, reporting and administrative requirements and tax-related financial statements disclosures, as well as the Tax Reform for Attracting Better and High-quality Opportunities (TRABAHO) Bill and other draft bills on tax amnesty.

RBA led a session titled How to Survive a BIR Audit, where she described the conduct of BIR audit and how taxpayers must respond accordingly to the audit investigation. She also discussed the rights and remedies of taxpayers according to the Tax Code and other laws and recent BIR issuances.