Congress OKs higher tax on tobacco
MANILA, Philippines — Congress approved Tuesday a bill increasing the excise tax on tobacco products after President Rodrigo Duterte certified the measure as urgent.
During its plenary session, the House of Representatives concurred with the Senate’s version of the higher tobacco tax bill. The lower chamber adopted Senate Bill No. 2233 to replace House Bill No. 8677 thereby dispensing the need for a bicameral conference committee to reconcile the two versions.
The House approved on final reading HB 8677 last Dec. 3 while the upper chamber green-lighted SB 2233 on Tuesday. The higher tax on tobacco bill only needs the President’s signature before becoming a law.
The adopted version of the bill proposes an increase on excise tax for every cigarette pack from P45 to P60 for the next four years. It also provides a 70 percent share from for towns and municipalities and 30 for provinces.
House Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo earlier explained that the bill approved by the Senate last Monday was amended Tuesday amid concerns by northern Luzon congressmen. (Editor: Julie Espinosa)
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