Close  

Senators ‘to do their best’ to pass sin tax bill before Congress ends — Zubiri

/ 08:03 PM May 22, 2019

MANILA, Philippines — The senators “agreed to do our best” to pass the bill seeking to raise the excise tax on tobacco products before Congress adjourns on June 7, Majority Leader Juan Miguel Zubiri said Wednesday.

Zubiri said this following a meeting with Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III who has been vocal of his call for the passage of the bill.

ADVERTISEMENT

“We, the senators, all agreed to do our best to pass this before the break. Sponsorship will start on Monday,” Zubiri said in a message to reporters.

The Senate majority leader said that the finance secretary underscored the need for additional funding for the Universal Health Care Law which was recently signed by President Rodrigo Duterte.

READ: Universal healthcare now a law

Universal healthcare now a law

“We discussed only sin taxes, particularly tobacco tax. The Secretary reiterated the need for additional funding for our new Universal Health Care measure as we have a large budget deficit for that program,” Zubiri said.

In an earlier interview, Zubiri admitted that the bill has “lukewarm” support in the upper chamber, on top of the time constraint it faces.

“I’m fully in support of increasing the sin taxes. Ang problema lang marami po tayong mga kasamahan na medyo napikon dun sa veto ng kanilang measures, which were all recommended by the finance team,” Zubiri said referring to the President’s veto of some measures pushed by the finance department, including the coconut levy bill and the bill that seeks to expand the powers of the Office of the Solicitor General.

(I’m fully in support of increasing the sin taxes. The problem is that we have colleagues who were turned off when the President vetoed their measures, which were all recommended by the finance team.)

ADVERTISEMENT

READ: Duterte vetoes bill expanding powers of SolGen’s office

Because of this, Zubiri said there is no assurance that the Senate will approve the bill. (Editor: Eden Estopace)

READ: Senators’ lukewarm’ on sin tax bill due to vetoed measures

Read Next
LATEST STORIES
MOST READ
Don't miss out on the latest news and information.
View comments

Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.

TAGS: Philippine News, Senate, Sin tax law, Tax, Tobacco, Zubiri
For feedback, complaints, or inquiries, contact us.


© Copyright 1997-2019 INQUIRER.net | All Rights Reserved

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.