Lift excise tax on oil products amid big time price hike — Hontiveros
MANILA, Philippines — Senator Risa Hontiveros on Monday called for the lifting of excise tax being imposed on oil products in a bid to mitigate the impact of an impending big time oil price hike this week.
Hontiveros issued the call to lift the imposition of excise tax on oil products under the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) law amid a possible oil price hike this week announced by oil companies ranging from P5.3 to P5.50 per liter for diesel, P3.60 to P3.80 per liter for gasoline, and P4.00 to P4.10 per liter kerosene due to the volatility of oil prices in the world market amid the Russia-Ukraine crisis.
“Sobrang mabigat ang magiging epekto nito sa ating mga kababayan – sa ating mga drayber, mga mangingisda, maliliit na negosyante, at maging sa ating konsyumer ng kuryente lalo na sa mga off-grid islands na gumagamit ng diesel para sa mga generation power plants,” she said in a statement.
(This will have a big impact on Filipinos – drivers, fishermen, small business owners as well as consumers in off-grid islands who use diesel for power plants.)
She stressed that aside from the domino effect of oil price hikes on other products, the imposition of excise tax directly affects electricity rates, especially in off-grid islands where power comes mainly from diesel-run generators of the National Power Corporation (NPC).
Hontiveros, who was the lone dissenter in the Senate when the TRAIN law was passed, recalled her concerns over the passage of the said measure.
“Naalala ko, ang pinakamalaking pangamba ko noong tinutulan ko ito ay ang maaaring mangyari sakaling patawan ng excise tax ang mga produktong petrolyo na hindi natin kontrolado ang galaw ng presyo,” she said.
(I remember, my biggest concern when I voted against it was that should excise tax be imposed on oil products we may have no control over the price movement.)
Thus, Hontiveros sees the lifting of the excise tax on oil products as the “only way” to insulate the people from the impact of unrelenting oil price increases.
She also said that the oil deregulation law must be reviewed or repealed to protect the interest of consumers. Earlier, Malacañang called on Congress to review the said law.
“Kung ang implementasyon ng ‘Doble-Plaka Law’ ay tamang naipahinto dahil sa oposisyon ng mga riders, mas higit makatwiran sa aking tingin, na mapigil ang ‘Doble-Bigat’ na pasanin mula sa big time oil price hike na ito,” Hontiveros went on.
(If the ‘Doble-Plaka’ law was deferred because of the opposition of riders, there’s much more reason I believe to stop the ‘Double-Burden’ we may carry due to this big time oil price hike.)
“At kung hindi ito agad magagawa, responsibilidad pa rin ng pamahalaan na magbigay ng ayuda sa ating mga kababayan katulad ng fuel subsidy o Pantawid Pasada para sa ating mga tsuper, magsasaka, at mangingisda,” she added.
(If this cannot be done, it is still the responsibility of the government to extend assistance to Filipinos in the form of fuel subsidies or Pantawid Pasada program for our drivers, farmers and fishermen.)
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