Solon says sin tax bill might be passed by Congress in December

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House of Representatives. INQUIRER FILE PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines—A lawmaker on Monday said he was confident that the 15th Congress will be able to pass the sin tax reform bill by December.

Davao City Representative Isidro Ungab, chairman of the House committee on ways and means, said he “will be amenable to whatever is the best measure that Congress can pass that will truly address the health concerns of the youth, the women and the poor sectors of our society.”

“The Senate can pass the sin tax bill by the end of the year,” he said.

“The senators are well aware that we have a deadline to meet in March 2013, the date the World Trade Organization set for us to act in its ruling, which requires the Philippine government to make corrective measures as to the excise taxes on distilled spirits which the WTO ruled as discriminatory against imported products,” added the lawmaker.

He said that he was preparing for the bicameral conference meeting which would follow once the Senate passes its version of the proposed measure within the week.

“Excise tax in cigarettes can be a good measure to control smoking and excessive drinking,” Ungab said.

He added he felt that Senator Franklin Drilon’s proposal for P45-billion additional excise tax revenue collection on the sin tax bill’s first year of implementation was “workable.”

He said this was higher than the House version’s target of P31.3 billion.

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  • Ommm

    One question is why is this government so “needy” to raise taxes from whatever source, being alcohol or tobacco or text messages , to fund a health care system?

    What happened to Pnoy’s “war on corruption” and the hundreds of billions diverted from corrupt pockets, now going into government coffers?

    There certainly must be a fortune saved by now and one would presume this country would be in “party mode”  with even less tax on smokes, drinks…even fuel should be dropping. Not to mention we should all be enjoying 100% government health care with this bonanza.

    Or was this “war” just a war against one man who has yet to pay his taxes?

    • popsie_cool

      another way for them to loot more…tsk tsk tsk…kahit anong tax pa implement ng mga yan wala rin.. i agree with you dapat alisin ang corruption yun naman ang nagpapahirap sa bansa natin.. Pnoy asan na ang mga pangako mo na hahabulin mo ang mga corrupt? Total shakedown na dapat

  • speedstream2

    Have you seen those full page ads decrying that a 1000-percent increase in taxes on cigarettes is too much? Well, no tax is high enough when it comes to a product that has been shown to have highly detrimental effects on human health, which all become added strain on the health care system.

  • opinyonlangpo

    The Philippines badly needed the money to finance its huge budget. Only Enrile, Recto, and their cohorts will not be happy with this. The balance in collection should be deducted from their pork barrel to be used for other purposes.

  • My mom

    LEEG natin ang nakasalang sa Sin Tax Reform Bill ni Sen. Drilon. Ibinatay niya ang tax revenues sa 5 percent GDP increases gayong wala pang 2 percent ang totoong paglaki ng cigarette industry taun-taon. Magic ang P40 bilyong projection niya. Nagtatanim si Drilon ng hangin pero tayo ang aani ng bagyo. Babawiin ang kakulangan sa bawat Pilipino, nagyoyosi man o hindi, sa pamamagitan ng Text Tax.

  • Cal_Reznick

    This will be passed in December?? Good luck with that prediction. December is Christmas time. Not much gets done in December. With or without the President’s certification of urgency, who knows when things will ever get done in the government.

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