Press Release
November 10, 2011


DBP GAVE $90M TO ONGPIN FIRM SANS A LOAN APPLICATION GAS capitalized at $2 only, and not licensed to do business in PHL

The Development Bank of the Philippines approved a $90 million loan (P3.8 billion) in December 2008 despite the absence of a loan application and a loan applicant, and released the money three weeks later to a Roberto Ongpin-controlled company that was not licensed to do business here and had a capitalization of only $2 (repeat, $2).

Sen. Serge Osmeña, Chairman of the Senate Committee on Banks, Financial Institutions and Currencies, bared today that Global Air Services (GAS) used the DBP money to buy securities related to the Metro Rail Transit (MRT), including those held by two other companies, Ashmore and Presidio, both linked to Ongpin.

"This is criminal, outrageous and utterly brazen, with the participants casually breaking several laws as if they do not exist. They used public money to buy assets for themselves and from themselves. It is Philex all over again," Osmeña said.

Osmeña added: "While this transaction is revolting, I welcome it because they became too cocky and reckless."

The senator said he would delve deeper into the GAS deal when the Senate inquiry into the P660 million loan given to Ongpin's Delta Ventures Resources Inc. (DVRI) in 2009 resumes on Monday, November 14. Former Marcos Trade Minister Roberto Ongpin is expected to attend the hearing for the first time.

The Senate inquiry, jointly conducted by the Senate Blue Ribbon and Banks committees, have so far unearthed how the old DBP Board of Directors, led by former President and Chief Executive Officer Rey David, sidestepped existing Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) regulations mandating strict compliance with all requirements for corporate loan applications, to accommodate the P660 million to DVRI.

Among others, the twin committees have discovered the grant of at least 10 exemptions to the DVRI that allowed the Ongpin firm to easily and speedily get the P660 million loan, in violation of BSP rules. Of the amount, the first P150 million was approved within one (1) week from the date of its application, while the second P510 million was approved on the same day that it was filed.

DVRI used the P660 million loan to acquire DBP's shares in Philex Mines, where both Ongpin and David were members of the board.

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