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SEC, BIR: ABS-CBN has no violations, regularly paying taxes

/ 11:59 AM February 24, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — ABS-CBN has not committed any violations of the law and has been regularly filing and paying its tax obligations, officials from the Security Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) said during the Senate hearing on the broadcast giant’s franchise renewal on Monday.

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“As far as ABS-CBN account is concerned, they are regularly filing and paying their taxes for the past number of years,” BIR Regular LT Audit Division 3 Head Simplicio Cabantac Jr. said.

Cabantac pointed out the network’s total tax payment from 2016 to 2019—excluding the income tax for the year 2019 as it would be filed only this April—amounted to over P14.39 billion.

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On the part of SEC, Commissioner Ephyro Luis Amatong said there are no pending complaints involving the network.

“At this time, we are not aware of any violation of any ongoing complaint or investigation involving ABS-CBN. ABS-CBN is a listed company subject to the reportorial requirement,” Amatong said.

“As far as we know right now there is no pending violation that doesn’t preclude possible investigation in the future,” he added.

On Feb. 11, the government’s chief lawyer sought the revocation of ABS-CBN’s franchise through a quo warranto petition filed before the Supreme Court.

Solicitor General Jose Calida, in his petition, claimed that ABS-CBN violated the constitution when it issued Philippine Depositary Receipts (PDRs) through ABS-CBN Holdings Corporation to foreigners.

He also accused the network of “broadcasting for a fee” when it operated a pay-per-view channel (KBO Channel) in its ABS-CBN TV Plus cable product without approval or permit from the National Telecommunications Commission.

ABS-CBN, however, has maintained it did not violate any law governing its franchise and that it had secured all necessary approvals for its business operations.

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TAGS: ABS-CBN franchise, Nation, news, Senate
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