DTI: Some LGUs base 2021 business renewal fees on pre-pandemic sales
MANILA, Philippines — Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary Ramon Lopez has raised concern over some local government units (LGUs) that supposedly base 2021 business renewal fees of restaurants as well as other micro-enterprises on their pre-pandemic earnings, which, according to a senator is “quite alarming.”
“Baka mayroong magawa ang Senate na kind of a resolution pagdating sa business renewal fees, lalo na binabase sa 2019—na alam naman antin na hindi naman iyon ang naging benta nila nung 2020 because of the pandemic,” Lopez told legislators during a Senate committee hearing that tackled the impact of the pandemic on micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) on Wednesday.
(Maybe the Senate can file a kind of resolution on business renewal fees, especially because these fees are being based on earnings in 2019—we know that earnings are not the same in 2020 because of the pandemic.)
“Baka naman ito ay madaling ma-adjust, malaking tulong ito dahil lahat ng nakausap naming micro (enterprise) na legitimate yung nagre-renew sa city hall ito ang reklamo nila kaya sana po may magawa tayo diyan,” he added.
(Maybe this can be adjusted easily, this will be a big help because all the micro-enterprises we talked to that are legitimately renewing their permit at the city hall are complaining about this. Hopefully, the Senate can do something about this.)
Eric Teng, president of the Restaurant Owners of the Philippines, confirmed this to the Senate committee.
“We are also very frustrated. Some LGUs are using 2019 (earnings) as the basis. I don’t know yet if all the LGUs are actually doing that,” Teng said.
Senator Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III, chair of the Senate trade panel, said fees for business permit renewal should be based on an applicant’s sales from the previous year.
“That is quite alarming because as I understand the rule and the law, when you renew for a certain year, it is the previous year’s revenues or income ang ide-declare mo. Doon ibabase ang mayor’s permit mo sa corresponding bracket [you will declare the revenues during the previous year. The mayor’s permit will be based on a corresponding bracket],” Pimentel pointed out.
Senator Francis Pangilinan agreed with Pimentel. “We will look into it.”
According to DTI figures, 10 percent of the 33,145 MSMEs the agency surveyed have closed their operations amid the pandemic as of June this year.
Meanwhile, 46 percent of the MSMEs are partially operating while 44 percent are fully operational.
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