OUTGOING  FINANCE SEC AMATONG ASSURED OF BSP MONETARY BOARD  SEAT

MANILA, January 25, 2005 (STAR) By Des Ferriols  -  Outgoing Finance Secretary Juanita D. Amatong has been assured a seat in the Monetary Board (MB) of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), leading some 300 candidates and applicants for the three board seats that will become vacant in July this year.

Top banking sources told reporters yesterday that President Arroyo already promised Amatong one seat in the MB where the outgoing Finance chief already sits as an ex-officio member.

The MB position was reportedly offered to Amatong when she was informed that she was being replaced by Trade and Industry Secretary Cesar Purisima at the Department of Finance.

Amatong declined to confirm or deny the offer, but she said she was not ruling out the possibility.

Sources revealed that there are at least 300 candidates and applicants for the MB seats that will be vacated by outgoing MB members: Juan Quintos, Melito S. Salazar and Antonio Alindogan.

Last week, former MB member Fe Barin was replaced by former Trade and Industry Undersecretary Raul Boncan Sr. Barin was earlier appointed chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Amatong’s replacement ushered the revamp in the top levels of the Arroyo administration following two successive credit ratings downgrade.

Amatong, a career official of the Department of Finance, served in the Arroyo Cabinet for 13 months after succeeding former Secretary Jose Isidro Camacho who resigned in December 2003.


Reported by: Sol Jose Vanzi

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