Daily Archives: September 25, 2008

Concepcion wins by KO

by Joseph Pimentel/AJPress

EL CAJON — There’s a saying “be careful what you wish for because you might just get it.” Freddie Roach had always said that Bernabe “The Real Deal” Concepcion needed tougher opponents to prepare for a world title.

Roach got more than he bargained for last Thursday night. At Manny Pacquiao’s first boxing promotional foray, MP Promotions, the 20-year-old Concepcion squeaked out a hard fought knockout victory against a tough chin, iron hearted Giovanni Caro of Mexico at the Sycuan Resort and Casino in San Diego.

“The Real Deal” Concepcion faced a real test. Concepcion’s last two fights ended in knockouts lasting five total rounds and he barely broke a sweat in either of those two fights. This one lasted eight rounds but he left the ring with a left eye the size of a baseball and had blood seeping through the corner slit of the eye.

Caro gave Concepcion fits all night long. Reminiscent of the Antonio Margarito vs. Miguel Cotto match up, Concepcion kept throwing his best shot at Caro but the strong willed Mexican kept coming.

During the first round, Caro landed a series of jab and right cross combinations aimed at the left eye of Concepcion.

In the third round, Concepcion landed a beautifully timed right cross to the chin of Caro, which immediately dropped him to the ground. This wasn’t enough to scare the Mexican fighter. And Concepcion did not try to finish him off.

By the fifth round, Caro continued to pepper Concepcion’s left eye, which by then had swelled to the size of a mouse.

It seemed that Concepcion threw the harder and cleaner punches at Caro throughout the night. However, the left eye now nearly shut bothered him creating a blind side that Caro quickly exposed. In between rounds, Roach’s corner was frantic trying to keep the swelling down as ringside doctors continued to monitor Concepcion’s eye.

In the eighth round, the two fighters were tangled up in the corner. Concepcion threw what seemed like a clean right uppercut to Caro’s right mid section area. However, Caro bent down like it was a low blow and the referee deducted Concepcion a point.

As Caro gathered himself, the ringside doctor made a quick check on Concepcion’s eye. The doctor was about to stop the fight due to the massive swelling around the left eye but Concepcion pleaded his case saying, “I can see. I can still see.”

With time running out and the doctor nearly stopping the fight, the predominantly Filipino crowd rose to their feet. Concepcion knew he had to finish the fight soon. He looked over to Pacquiao’s ringside seat. Concepcion bumped his chest twice with his fist and nodded over to the pound-4-pound king.

Once the referee began action, Concepcion pounced on Caro. Concepcion landed a series of right and left hooks cleanly to the head of Caro causing the latter to stagger towards the corner ropes. Concepcion continued to swing wildly and finished Caro off with another devastating right cross. Caro fell with his back towards the corner ropes. The referee counted him out.

After the fight, Concepcion, who required eight stitches after the match, said that there was no way he was going to lose that fight.

“I was just thinking of all the Filipinos out there in the crowd, [and] around the world supporting me,” said Concepcion. “I didn’t want to give up. I didn’t want to surrender. I wanted to keep going to give them a good fight so I kept fighting.”

He said that Caro was one of the strongest and best fighters he’s ever faced.

“He’s a good fighter and strong puncher,” said Concepcion. “He has a strong chin and even stronger heart.”

Roach said this fight would help Concepcion prepare for a world title shot.

“If we want to fight for a world title we needed some rounds instead of a two or three round fight,” said Roach. “He [Caro] gave me exactly what we wanted. It was a tough fight maybe more than we asked for but you know it’ll build character for Bernabe and now we know what to expect in tough fights. ”

Undercard

FilAm Brian Viloria (23-2 13 KOs) won easily against Javier Lagos by unanimous decision. The 27-year-old flyweight outmatched his opponent for all eight rounds. Viloria used quick feet and good combination punching to defeat Lagos.

Viloria said that the match was a good tune up for his December 13 title match against IBF Light Flyweight titlist Ulisses Solis in Macau, China.

Dennis Laurente of Paranaque, Philippines (30-3-5 16 KOs) stopped Arturo Urena in the sixth round of the scheduled eight round bout. Doctors stopped the fight due to cuts around Urena’s face.

(www.asianjournal.com)

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Put Your Money WhereYour Heart Is – Invest in Your Homeland

by Cynthia de Castro/AJPress
Recently, while having my hair cut in a beauty salon in Glendale, I heard two Korean women talking about buying retirement homes for their parents.

One was relating to the other woman how happy her parents have been in their new retirement home inside a plush community with a golf course and country club amenities. She said it was so cheap and their money went a long, long way rather than if they just continued to live here in California. The other woman was excited to hear this and said she will surely call her friend’s sales agent. My interest quickly perked up when I heard where the parents retired. The Korean said hundreds of Koreans are doing what she did — investing and retiring in the Philippines!

Yes, many foreign nationals are buying and investing in the Philippines. With the baby boomer generation just about to retire in a few years, many are planning where and how to spend their retirement. People are realizing that in America or Europe, the high costs of living and the low interest their pensions are earning will not give them a good lifestyle in their senior years. Moving to retire in the Philippines has become a very attractive option. If foreigners are buying real estate in the country, all the more should Pinoys invest into their homeland.

Over the past decade, the Philippines has become a retirement haven for thousands of foreigners. Our country has developed communications, infrastructure, and service delivery systems that meet the needs of foreign retirees. Better yet, unlike most other countries, nearly everyone speaks English in the Philippines.

There are so many good things happening in our country, despite what you may read and hear from mass media. The Philippine Stock exchange hit a nine-year record in 2006, opened in 2007 some 30 percent higher, and continues to be strong. Among the 25 priority infrastructure projects expected for completion by 2010 are the LRT line 1 to NAIA, the P21-billion Subic-Clark-Tarlac Expressway, the P6.9-billion Subic Port development the P1.3-billion North Expressway-South Luzon Expressway connection via C-5 Project, and the Edsa Rehabilitation Project. Six of the major projects have been completed.

The Philippines has also emerged a strong second to India in the global outsourcing market. In 2006, it recorded $3.6 billion in earnings, a 50-percent jump from 2005. By 2010 it is expected to earn as much as $12.2 billion.Big outsourcing players in the U.S. such as Sykes Enterprises, Convergys, PeopleSupport Inc, Accenture, and eTelecare Global solutions have already set up headquarters in the Philippines, and Dell computers recently opened a contact center. The Philippines is becoming a much-preferred option as it has stronger cultural ties to the United States than India, and it is expected to catch up and even overtake India as market leader.

But more than all these good news, the best news is that the Philippines offers a significantly lower cost of living. The Philippine Peso exchange rate is approximately 45 to $1, which means your dollar will go a long, long way there than in the US. Housing, food, and labor costs are very reasonable. Cable Television, Hi-Speed Internet and Satellite Communications are cheap. One can hire an air-conditioned taxicab for eight hours for less than $30. In a country where a provincial Governor’s salary is only about Php35,000 per month, and a Presidential Cabinet Under-Secretary earns something like Php45,000, your pension can go a long way. So, if you have a retirement income in the region of $1,500 to $2,000 per month (Php70,000 to Php90,000) you can live like a rich man in the Philippines.

Where can you find a 3-bedroom home with a garden for only $30,000? You can in the Philippines, and you can even get up to 14% per annum ROI from rental returns. These figures probably seem unbelievably crazy to foreign buyers —and all of this comes complete with average 85 degree temperatures and sunshine nearly all year round.

Recent studies indicated that more than 85% of all condo sales in Metro Manila were to international clients. While Metro Manila is still a popular choice with international buyers, quite a number of people are also investing in year-round vacation destinations, like in Tagaytay or Boracay. Unlike other offshore rental properties, where the rental market is largely seasonal, in the Philippines there is a strong market for rental properties year round. This gives buyers greater flexibility in choosing when to use and when to rent their property. The strong rental/second home market also has resulted in a proliferation of professional property managers and rental agents, making property ownership and rental easy.

Philippine real estate, medical, social services, and employment agencies are now working together under the government’s Philippine Retirement Authority (PRA) to set up standards and make the retirement industry truly world class. The objective is to turn the country into the retirement haven in Asia.

The best time to invest in the Philippines is now, when we are on the verge of a phenomenal future. The Philippine currency has reached a 5-year high in 2007 and continues to be strong and resilient, fortified by the economic management of the current administration. They say the country could be on the verge of the biggest real estate boom in history, set to totally eclipse the 1997 Asian crisis, and fueled by money from Filipino Expatriates, foreign investment, and a bullish economy.

One of my friends in the Philippines wrote to me recently, saying Koreans have bought a large part of Session Road in Baguio. She was so concerned that thousands of Pinoys are leaving our country everyday while many foreigners have been investing and buying real estate. She said that the day might come when there might not be enough attractive land for Filipinos in the Philippines. So, if we have money to invest, let’s start investing where our hearts are. In our homeland — the Philippines.  (www.asianjournal.com)

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RP as a Retirement Haven

by Rochelle C. Pangilinan/AJPress
Even with today’s financial woes, real estate investments in the Philippines remains unthreatened––and booming even––thanks to the retirees who decide to settle in the country after years and years of hard work.

It seems like real estate is something retirees do not think twice of sinking their hard-earned money in, and last July, it was reported that a total of some 40,00 units are to be built by condominium developers over the next five years to compensate for the demand for residential property of retirees (Filipinos and foreign nationals alike) and overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) as well.

It has been a vision of the Philippine Retirement Authority (which was mandated in July 1985 to attract foreign nationals and former Filipino citizens to invest, reside and retire in the Philippines) to make the Philippines the preferred retirement destination in Southeast Asia by 2010, and it seems it would indeed materialize. Both PRA and the Philippine Retirement Inc. (PRI) plan to attract close to a million retirees by 2015 as well.

PRA’s flagship campaign is the Special Resident Retiree Visa or SSRV to would-be retirees and offer them a range of services, benefits and comforts that would make their stay truly worthwhile in the Philippines. Registered residents are set to enjoy the option for permanent residency, multiple entry and indefinite stay in the country. As of March of this year, there are a total of 17,580 retirees enrolled in the program and the number is expected to grow even bigger.

With the assistance of PRA, retires can choose to invest their required deposit through three means: (1) purchase, acquisition and ownership of a condo unit; (2) long-term lease of house and lot, condominium or townhouse for a period not shorter than 20 years; and (3) purchase, acquisition and ownership of golf or country club shares.

Indeed, with several real estate projects currently in the works, the Philippines is fast-becoming a haven for retirees.

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