2 senators buck higher taxes on oil products
Two senators have opposed a plan to impose additional taxes on oil products while three others pushed for its careful study along with other measures designed to generate revenues for government.
Minority Senators Ralph Recto and Leila de Lima rejected the Duterte administration’s bid to impose a P6 per liter tax for diesel and taxes on gasoline and cooking gas.
Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno on Wednesday said the government plans to impose additional taxes on oil products because of the need for an increase in revenue to finance its ambitious infrastructure program that would cost from P8 trillion to P9 trillion during the six-year Duterte administration.
Recto thumbed down the increases, saying there was no fiscal crisis in the country.
“The timing is also bad now that oil prices are on their way up. Just improve collection efficiency and stop smuggling,” he said in a statement.
“In addition, government collects more taxes when the economy grows faster. Then grow the economy. Spend the budget first,” Recto also said.
For her part, De Lima said the planned increases were “not acceptable” and would only burden the people since these could result to hikes in transport fares and consumer goods.
“Are they really angry at the poor? It’s always the poor who are the victims, such as in the war on drugs, so even in collecting taxes, it will be the poor who should suffer?” De Lima said in a statement.
The senator also pushed for an extensive study of the plan as she questioned the necessity of the increases.
“Maybe they should focus more on fulfilling the President’s campaign promise to curb corruption in these revenue collection agencies to increase collection efficiency,” De Lima said.
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