European chamber bats for 'bolder' corporate income tax reform

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jun 04 2019 07:35 PM

MANILA - The Philippines should take a "bolder" move to reduce corporate income taxes so that it can attract more foreign investors, a business group said Tuesday. 

The European Chamber of Commerce Philippines (ECCP) said the Tax Reform for Attracting Better and High Quality Opportunities or TRABAHO Bill should have a shorter timetable to reduce the corporate income tax rate. 

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Under the TRABAHO bill, the 30-percent corporate income tax rate will be reduced to 28 percent in 2021, 26 percent in 2023, 24 percent in 2025, 22 percent in 2027 and 20 percent in 2029.

But ECCP president Nabil Francis said businessmen don't want to wait 10 years to get the tax rate down. 

He proposed that the tax rate be reduced to 25 percent on the first year, then reduced by 1 to 2 percentage points in the succeeding years. 

Francis noted that Singapore's corporate tax is already down to 17 percent, while Vietnam's was at 20 percent. 

"If you want to compete and attract foreign investors then you really need to do something," Francis said in an interview with ANC's Market Edge. 

He also said his group has reservations on the ENDO Bill which guarantees security of tenure for employees by preventing labor-only contracting. 

Francis said that while they understand the need to give workers security of tenure, businesses should also have the "flexibility to subcontract some strategic tasks."