The Philippines: Senate to pass CITIRA for business recovery

  • The Senate is likely to pass the proposed Corporate Income Tax and Incentives Rationalization Act (CITIRA) to help companies get back on their feet, and help jumpstart the economy that has been battered by the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) crisis, senators said on 3 May 20.
  • Senate President Vicente Sotto III said the CITIRA will help corporations as well as micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) recover from the slump. CITIRA aims to lower the corporate income tax (CIT) and improve the incentives system for businesses.
  • “This will also have some benefits to the government, which will be able to collect revenues from sectors that were not taxed before,” Sotto told dzBB.
  • He however stressed he would push for amendments to make sure that the bill—pushed by the Department of Finance—will not lead to loss of jobs or burden consumers.
  • Under the bill, the country’s CIT rate will be gradually lowered by 1% every year, from 30% to 20% by 2030. The measure will also rationalize fiscal incentives given to firms to make these “performance-based, time-bound, targeted, and transparent.”
  • The bill intends to prioritize incentives to business activities that generate domestic employment; promote research, development and innovation; promote agribusiness; and invest in areas that are less developed or are recovering from disasters and conflicts, among others.
  • CITIRA shall likewise offer additional tax deductions to reward corporations’ good behavior, such as local job creation, exports, and investment in high technology.

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