Dominguez confident 1st tax reform package would be approved by mid-year

MACTAN ISLAND-- Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III remains confident that despite the delays, lawmakers will approve the comprehensive tax reform program's (CTRP) first package middle of this year.

Yes. We are very confident that shortly after June, the legislature will pass the first package that we have related to personal income taxes and fuel taxes, he said in an interview with Bloomberg News Friday on the sidelines of the five-day 12th ASEAN finance and central bank governors meetings that began here Monday.

The first package of the CTRP proposes a cut on personal income tax and hikes on fuel and vehicle excise taxes. It was submitted by the finance department to Congress last September.

Finance officials were expecting the approval of House of Representatives Bill 4774, which espouses the tax reform program, before Congress paused for a break mid-March.

This however did not materialize although the House Committee on Ways and Means approved the measure in principle and decided to form a Technical Working Group (TWG) to study it further.

Dominguez said the tax reform program is key to the Duterte administration's goal to ensure that funding will be available for the implementation of large infrastructure projects aimed at addressing disparities in the country.

Data from the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) show that for 2017 alone, about 23.1 percent of the national budget has been allocated to finance the construction of road networks, as well as transportation and communications facilities.

Source: Philippines News Agency

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