DOF presses tax reforms to cut budget deficit
MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Finance (DOF) has urged President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. to prioritize several tax reforms to narrow the fiscal deficit.
In a Palace briefing on Tuesday, DOF Secretary Benjamin Diokno disclosed that he talked to Marcos in a sectoral briefing about the matter. He said the government does not want to borrow too heavily from abroad.
“We ask the President to act on the following request, these are some tax measures – VAT (value added tax) on digital services; excise tax on single-use plastic – this is for climate change proposal,” Diokno said.
“This is VAT on digital services – this is based on fairness because if you buy from a brick-and-mortar store or regular store, you pay VAT, why don’t you just pay for the digital service?” he also pointed out, speaking in a mix of English and Filipino.
While Diokno advised against borrowing externally, he still emphasized that the country’s debt-to-Gross Domestic Product ratio is good as it is the lowest among nations in Southeast Asia.