The Philippines: House bill proposes 6-month lowering of excise tax on fuel

  • A SENIOR LEGISLATOR has filed a bill in the House of Representatives to lower the excise tax on fuel products for six months, including zero tax for diesel, with the revenue to be foregone by the government estimated at more than PHP55bn.
  • Albay Rep. Jose Ma. Clemente S. Salceda, who chairs the House Committee on Ways and Means, said his House Bill 10438 will provide “immediate relief” from rising global oil prices.
  • The measure, if signed into law, would exempt diesel and kerosene from excise tax and would reduce the charge on gasoline to PHP7 per liter (/L) from PHP10/L.
  • The excise rate was set by the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) Law and is enforced between 1 Dec 21 and 1 Jun 22.
  • Republic Act No. 10963 or the TRAIN Law raised excise tax on fuel in three tranches from 2018 to 2020.
  • These rates are now at PHP10/L for gasoline, PHP6/L for diesel, PHP5/L for kerosene, and PHP3/L for liquefied petroleum gas.
  • Mr. Salceda estimated foregone revenue due to the proposed law at PHP55.04bn, less than the PHP131.4bn projected by the DoF if all excise taxes are suspended.
  • “These losses will be partly offset by increases in VAT collections due to rising prices, which would be around PHP19.01bn from these three products. The net decline in fuel tax collections will be around PHP36.03bn,” he added. He said the measure will help bring down inflation by about 0.4 to 0.6 percentage points.
  • On 2 Nov 21 oil companies raised the price of gasoline by PHP1.15 per liter while diesel and kerosene prices fell by PHP0.35 and PHP0.30 respectively.
  • As of 26 Oct 21, pump prices in the year to date for gasoline and diesel have increased by PHP20.80 per liter and PHP18.45 respectively, according to the Energy department.

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