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Philippines Development Forum Tackles Tax Reform

by Mary Swire, Tax-News.com, Hong Kong

14 November 2016


Over 400 stakeholders attended the Philippine Development Forum in Davao City on November 8-9, 2016, to discuss the Government's tax reform agenda.

The Department of Finance (DOF) is working on a Comprehensive Tax Reform Program to help ensure the financial sustainability of the new Government's accelerated spending on infrastructure, human capital, and social protection, as a way to realize the primary goal of the 10-point socio-economic agenda, which is intended to drastically reduce poverty in the country.

The DOF has already submitted to the Congress the first package of this tax plan. It includes cuts to personal income taxes primarily for the benefit of wage earners and other low-income Filipinos, along with measures to offset the projected revenue losses from the lower tax rates, such as by adjusting the fuel excise tax and automobile tax, and broadening the value-added tax base by removing certain exemptions.

The multi-sector dialogue – the first under the Duterte administration – resulted in a series of recommendations from participants including the need for urgent tax administration reforms and the passage of a measures to shift the tax burden from low- and middle-income groups to rich consumers.

Participants also called for a targeted transfer program under the 2018 national budget to cushion the impact of revenue-enhancing measures on the country's most vulnerable sectors.

TAGS: Finance | tax | business | law | budget | Philippines | tax authority | tax rates | tax reform | trade | Tax

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