Philippines: Senate to join House, discuss fate of tax reforms on 14 Jan 19

  • THE SENATE will discuss the fate of at least the second tax reform package, the proposed 2019 national budget and of other priorities in a caucus when 17th Congress lawmakers return to work on 14 Jan 19, the head of the chamber said on 2 Jan 18.
  • Lawmakers have 14 Jan 19 – 8 Feb 19 to work on remaining priorities under this Congress, and just 20 May 19 – 7 Jun 19 after the 13 May 19 legislative and local elections.
  • Only one of up to five planned tax reform packages has so far been enacted: Republic Act No. 10963, or the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion Act that slashed personal income tax rates and raised or added taxes on various items.
  • The TRABAHO bill — which the House of Representatives approved in Sep 18 and which awaits approval in the Senate Ways and Means committee — aims to cut corporate income tax rates and streamline fiscal incentives.
  • Senator Juan Edgardo M. Angara, who heads that committee, said the panel will do its “best” to approve tax reform packages that hurdled the House in 2018.
  • The House had also approved the other remaining tax reforms before adjournment, including reforms in the motor vehicle users’ charge, additional excise taxes on tobacco and alcohol products, an increase in the government’s share from mining, restructuring of real tax property taxation, and rationalization of taxes on financial instruments.
  • Mr. Sotto said the Senate will target to pass several priority measures, such as the controversial proposal on security of tenure and end of contract (endo) system. He added that the priority measures will be discussed along with the proposed PHP3.757tr budget.
  • The Senate adjourned session on 15 Dec 18 without approving the proposed national budget, saying it did not have enough time to do so. That resulted in automatic re-enactment of the 2018 budget, but the chamber has said it expects to approve the proposed 2019 spending plan by Feb 19.
  • Proposed amendments to RA 9372 or the Human Security Act of 2007, which await Senate committee approval, seeks to impose stiffer penalties on acts of terrorism.
  • The Security of Tenure bill, which awaits second-reading approval in plenary session, tightens restrictions on labor contracting. Mr. Duterte had vowed in his presidential campaign to ban all forms of contracting, but the current bill has not found favor either with workers’ groups — who say it does not go far enough — or with business, which says it is too restrictive.

External Link: https://www.bworldonline.com/senate-to-discuss-fate-of-tax-reforms-other-priorities-on-jan-14/

External Link: https://www.philstar.com/headlines/2019/01/03/1881903/senate-prioritize-endo-amendments-procurement-law

3-Jan-2019


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