House, DOF kick off discussions on TRAIN 4

RG Cruz, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 24 2018 05:24 PM | Updated as of Sep 24 2018 05:51 PM

MANILA – The House Committee on Ways and Means and the Department of Finance (DOF) on Monday started working on the fourth package of President Rodrigo Duterte’s comprehensive tax reform program (CTRP) after House Bill 8252 was filed on Sept. 17. 

The bill seeks to provide neutrality in tax treatment, tax system, tax competitiveness, and increased capital mobility and financial inclusion, among others, Committee Chair and Nueva Ecija 1st District Representative Estrelita Suansing said in a briefing with the DOF. 

It will also address the complicated tax structure, susceptibility to arbitrage, uneven playing field, inequitable and non-competitive tax system, high administrative and compliance costs, and the lack of support in capital market development, she said. 

“This is a reform as significant as the recently signed TRAIN (Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion) law that it aims to complement as it deals with the financial sector which contributes a lot to the economy and plays a crucial role in financing large-scale investments such as this administration’s Build Build program,” she said.

Finance Undersecretary Karl Chua said the revenue impact of this measure is around P13 billion on its first year and is expected to fall given that some tax rates will be lowered. 

Chua said the full effect of the comprehensive tax reform program “is better seen” by looking at the entire program of 5 packages. 

“Sometimes, when we just look at one provision of one package, we do not see the full benefit," he said, after the TRAIN 1 was blamed for the rising inflation rate. 

The House approved the second package of TRAIN called Tax Reform for Attracting Better and High Quality Opportunities (TRABAHO) Bill last Sept. 10.