Duterte calls Pangilinan a puppet. But who was Duterte referring to?

Manuel V. Pangilinan recently warned the incoming president to leave business alone. Duterte not to be told off, rebuked him saying, “You are only a puppet!” But who was Duterte referring to.

Duterte is referring to none other than Anthoni Salim. Anthoni Salim who?

  1. He is the third richest Indonesian ranked by the Forbes Magazine in 2014. His net worth is $5.9B.
  2. He is the son of Soedono Salim. Soedono is closely tied with the Indonesian dictator Suharto. It was the latter who suggested the adoption of the Indonesian name Soedono (meaning, money) so he can blend into the Indonesian society. Soedono is from Fuzhou, China.
  3. His father founded the world’s largest instant noodle manufacturer, Indofood.
Pangilinan, Puppet, Salim, Duterte
Looks Familiar? Image source: EC Plaza.
  1. He paid respect during the last day of viewing of the wake of President Corazon Aquino in August 4, 2009. With him in tow, is Manny Pangilinan.
  2. He is the Indonesian billionaire allegedly behind the MVP (Manny V. Pangilinan) group.
  3. He is the chairman of First Pacific Company Limited where MVP is the managing Director. The First Pacific is a holding company. A holding company is a company that do not produce goods and services but owns shares of other companies where it can secure voting power so it can have a say in its policies and management.
  4. His holding company First Pacific generates 66% of its profits from its Philippine Operations.
  5. Salim has used borrowings from Philippine government banks such as the Development Bank of the Philippines and Land Bank.
  6. His holding company First Pacific owns a labyrinthine of companies, which to me is a work of genius. It is in fact, complicated to understand. This layering of companies is accordingly a strategy to skirt its way through the 40% restriction of foreign ownership set in the 1987 constitution.
  7. The First Pacific for instance owns shares in Philex Mining, PLDT and Metro Pacific Investments. PLDT which is heavily associated with Manuel V. Pangilinan, also owns Smart Telecom, Philippine Star, Business World, Philippine Daily Inquirer, Cignal, TV5, and Interaksyon.com. Metro Pacific Investments also operates tollways through Metro Pacific Tollways Corporation. These tollways are NLEX, Clark, Manila-Cavite Expressway. It builds bridges as Cebu-Cordova bridge, and the LRT Cavite Line; and operates hospitals such as the Makati Medical Center and Asian Medical Center. Apart from these companies the First Pacific also created layers upon layers of companies beyond my comprehension,

(Note: The biggest individual stockholder of Metro Pacific is Alberto del Rosario, the former Foreign Affairs Secretary of Benigno Aquino III)

There is nothing wrong if foreigners own even up to 70% of capitalization, but what is wrong is when these companies squeeze the Filipinos dry of their hard earned money. Think Smart telecoms, Meralco, Maynilad, and the tolls paid in the expressways. No wonder, Manny Pangilinan wants business to be left alone to the business men.


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  1. Waxey Gordon | 26th Jun 16

    You know, I have looked all over for the source of this report that Duterte told Pangilinan this, and I cannot find it anywhere. Some post the link of the Philippine Daily Inquirer story whre Pangilinan told government to leave business alone, but there is nothing on the President saying this. I think some groups are using the President’s popularity to promote their leftist agenda by claimiung he made a quote which he never did. That is tresachery, considering Duterte wants them to be allies. This is not only treachery, it is cybercrime.

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