MAYNILA — Bisperas pa lang ng bagong taon, sabay-sabay na taas-presyo sa
mga produktong petrolyo ang agad na sasalubong sa mga konsumer.
Sa Martes, Disyembre 31, madaragdagan ang singil sa kada litro ng gasolina, diesel, at kerosene.
Samantala, malaki-laki ang nakaambang taas-presyo sa LPG na magsisimula sa Enero 1.
Tinatayang P7 hanggang P8 ang imamahal ng kada kilo ng LPG o dagdag na P77 hanggang P88 sa karaniwang 11-kilong tangke.
Ayon sa Department of Energy, hindi pa ito ang dagdag-singil ng
excise tax dahil kailangang ubusin pa ang lumang stock ng langis.
Pero kapag epektibo na ito, narito ang magiging dagdag sa presyo sa mga produktong petrolyo batay sa batas:
Dahil dito, nagsimula nang humirit ang mga grupo ng jeepney drivers ng dagdag singil sa pasahe.
MANILA, Philippines – Rate hikes for diesel fuel may reach up to P7
per liter if the third tranche of the Tax Reform for Acceleration and
Inclusion (TRAIN) law is not repealed, party-list group Bayan Muna
warned on Monday.
Bayan Muna Reps. Carlos Zarate and Ferdinand Gaite said that this
amount is derived from the impending price hikes and the excise tax on
fuel as mandated by the TRAIN law, which was signed by President Rodrigo
Duterte in 2017.
“Worse, considering the shift to diesel by tankers transporting oil
products, an additional P5-P10 more, based on DOE (Department of Energy)
computations, will be added to diesel prices per liter. This means, we
will have a whopping P7 per liter increase in diesel alone,” Zarate said
in a statement.
“This would have a tremendous effect on the prices of basic
goods as well as transportation fares and may be worse than the price
shocks we experienced in 2018,” he added.
Under the TRAIN law’s third tranche, diesel prices would go up by
P1.50 per liter in 2020. Gasoline fuel increases, on the other hand,
would be at P1.85 per liter, kerosene at P1.35 per liter higher, and
bunker fuel and petroleum coke by P1.50.
Zarate also cast doubt on whether oil companies would heed the DOE
policy to consume their old stocks first before selling fuel at a higher
price due to the excise taxes.
He claimed that this problem would have been solved if only
the unbundling of oil prices — that is, publicizing the breakdown of
fuel prices — was only implemented.
“Even if the DOE is telling oil companies to first deplete their old
stocks before imposing the added excise tax on oil products, without the
unbundling of the prices of oil products, we cannot tell for certain if
the oil companies are already passing on the new excise taxes,” Zarate
“Aside from unbundling oil prices for consumers to see the true
prices of oil, we maintain that it is still best to repeal the TRAIN law
so as to protect consumers from the upcoming price shocks like in 2018
when it was first implemented,” he added.
Gaite meanwhile warned that the high increases may be the cause of
high prices of goods, which translate to high inflation rates. If such
scenario ensues, he claimed that the supposed low inflation rates for
2019 would only be negated
“Again if the administration wants to shield consumers from the
upcoming price onslaught then it should immediately repeal the TRAIN
law,” he dared.
The TRAIN law was signed by Duterte last December 2017, who said that
it was the best Christmas gift for the Filipino people. The measure
was seen as a source of funds for the administration’s infrastructure
While the law featured several reprieves such as income tax
exemptions for people earning less than P35,000 per month, it was also a
source of criticism for opposition groups as they believed it spurred
high inflation rates in 2018, especially in September and October where
it reached a nine-year record of 6.7 percent.
Higher prices of gasoline, diesel and cooking gas will greet
Filipinos on the first day of 2020 as the third tranche of excise tax
increases takes effect.
Smokers also will have to brace for higher prices of cigarettes and e-cigarettes.
The retail price of unleaded gasoline will go up P1 per liter and that of diesel by P1.50 per liter starting Jan. 1.
The price of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) will also rise by P1 per kilogram.
The Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) Act raises to a
cumulative P10 per liter or kilogram in 2020 from P9 in 2019 the excise
on regular and unleaded gasoline, asphalts, denatured alcohol,
lubricating oils and greases, naphtha and processed gas as well as waxes
The TRAIN law, which took effect in 2018, will raise by P1.50 to P6
this year the excise on every liter of bunker and diesel fuel oil, and
each kilogram of petroleum coke.
The excise on LPG will rise by P1 to P3 per kilogram, while the levy on kerosene will also be P1 higher at P5 per liter.
The higher oil excise rates for 2020 will take effect given that
global prices remained below the $80-per-barrel threshold, at which the
government can suspend scheduled hikes under the TRAIN law.
The new rates must nonetheless be applied only to fresh supply and not to carry-over stocks from 2019 or older.
As for domestic or imported coal and coke, the excise will jump P50 to P150 per metric ton.
The higher taxes on consumption of oil, sugary drinks, motor vehicles
and cosmetic procedures were supposed to offset forgone revenue from
the simplified personal income tax structure under TRAIN, in which
annual net taxable income of below P250,000 is tax exempt.
The state-run Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS) has
said that higher oil excise taxes negatively affect poor families.
But the Department of Finance (DOF) has claimed that the net impact
of the TRAIN law, including more revenues for infrastructure projects,
social services and unconditional cash transfers, would lead to
sustained economic growth and poverty reduction.
As of September last year, net revenues from higher TRAIN taxes hit
P91.3 billion, exceeding the nine-month target of P77.3 billion, latest
DOF data showed.
In the case of cigarettes, the Tobacco Tax Law of 2019 will raise
“sin” taxes to P45 per pack in 2020; P50 in 2021; P55 in 2022; and P60
in 2023, to be followed by 5-percent annual indexation from 2024 onward.
Under the TRAIN law, cigarette excise stood at P35 a pack as of July
2018 and would have had climbed to a lower rate of P37.50 per pack this
year if the tobacco tax law had not been enacted.
For e-cigarettes, the tobacco tax law provided that heated tobacco
products be levied an excise of P10 a pack beginning Jan. 1, to be
followed by yearly hikes of 5 percent starting 2021.
As for vapor products, individual cartridges, refills, pods or
containers of liquid solutions will be slapped a tax of P10 per 10 ml,
or a larger P50 on top of P10 per additional 10 ml for those being sold
in volumes higher than 50 ml in 2020.
The new excise rates on heated tobacco and vaping products will be
implemented following the formal entry last year of US-based Juul and
China-based RELX into the Philippine market and the ban on vapes ordered
by President Duterte.
Philip Morris was planning to launch its iQOS heated tobacco products in the Philippines by the first half of 2020.
The higher cigarette and e-cigarette
taxes form part of package “2 plus” of the Duterte administration’s
comprehensive tax reform program.
But Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III earlier said the rates to
be slapped on e-cigarettes were “too low,” hence the DOF later pushed
for rates at par with traditional cigarettes on top of a bigger levy on
In December, the two chambers of Congress passed the bill that would
impose P25 per pack on heated tobacco products starting 2020, and P45
per 10 ml for conventional free-base vapor products and P37 per ml in
the case of salt nicotine vapes.
The bill will also prohibit selling heated tobacco and vaping products to those aged 21 and below as well as nonsmokers.
Also in the Congress-approved bill was a new specific tax of P35 per
liter to be slapped on fermented liquors such as beer, while sparkling
and still wines will be taxed P50 a liter.
Both “alcopops” (flavored alcoholic drinks) and distilled spirits
(including brandy, gin, rum, vodka and whiskey) will be levied a
22-percent ad valorem tax, on top of specific tax worth P42 per proof
liter this year.
On Monday night, Assistant Finance Secretary Tony Lambino told the
Inquirer the DOF had yet to receive word if Mr. Duterte had already
signed into law the bill further jacking up alcohol and e-cigarette tax
But ideally, the DOF wants higher taxes on e-cigarettes and alcohol
products implemented on Jan. 1 to serve as a simpler reckoning in the
books of business establishments.
Based on DOF estimates, the Congress-approved sin tax bill would raise P22.2 billion when implemented in 2020.
In the next five years, these higher sin taxes would generate a total of P137.2 billion in additional revenues.
Dominguez has said that since the
additional levy on alcoholic drinks, heated tobacco and vaping products
approved by Congress is lower than originally proposed and will generate
less revenues than needed, funds to implement the universal health care
law this year may fall short.
The government would need about P258 billion for universal health
care in 2020 and “sin” taxes were among its major sources of funding.
Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, December 27) —
Inflation picked up further in December with higher power, fuel, and
food costs, a unit of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) said Friday.
The BSP Department of Economic Research pegged December inflation between 1.8-2.6 percent, which is definitely faster than the 1.3 percent pace in November. Still, this is slower than the 5.1 percent climb tallied in December 2018.
The central bank said higher electricity rates and fuel prices, as
well as hikes in some food prices due to the impact of recent typhoons
have pushed the prices of basic goods up.
Two typhoons hit parts of the country this month: Tisoy and Ursula.
"Meanwhile, inflation could be tempered by the continued easing of domestic rice prices," the BSP unit said.
Inflation has substantially eased coming from near-decade highs
tallied in 2018, allowing the Monetary Board to trim interest rates
thrice this year just to undo tightening moves meant to dampen previous
The Philippine Statistics Authority will release the latest inflation data on January 7.
Ruben Carlo Asuncion, chief economist of the Union Bank of the
Philippines, said price increases will likely remain manageable in 2020.
"We're expecting 2020 to be a benign inflation year. We do not see,
at least for 2020, any particular spikes or risk of higher oil prices,"
Asuncion told CNN Philippines' Business Roundup. "I think in
general, oil prices are going to be stable. Therefore, for next year we
expect inflation to be around 2.8 percent."
Slower price movements this 2019 would also help boost economic
growth, even after a slow start due to the delayed passage of the
"It will be more than 6 percent total for 2019 if consumption
actually comes in as a major driver," Asuncion added, despite the
average pace of 5.8 percent as of end-September.
However, he noted that the long-standing trade tensions
between the United States and China will likely continue to sow
volatility in the global markets, which could further dampen
THE GOVERNMENT’S two major revenue-generating agencies collected a total of P2.8 trillion in 2019 but still fell short of their respective targets for the year, the Department of Finance (DoF) reported on Monday.
In a statement, the DoF said the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR), the largest tax-collecting agency, collected P2.172 trillion last year, short by 6.8% of its target of P2.33 trillion for 2019, according to preliminary data.
This made up 77.57% of total revenues last year.
Nonetheless, last year’s performance was 10.67% higher compared to the P1.962 trillion it collected in 2018.
Despite the missed target, BIR Deputy Commissioner for Operations Arnel S.D. Guballa said the agency was still able to breach the P2-trillion collection mark last year.
Meanwhile, the Bureau of Customs (BoC), the second-biggest revenue-collecting agency, recorded P630.57 billion worth of collections, almost five percent short of its P661-billion target but still 6.32% higher year on year. This accounted for 22.5% of the total collections of both agencies in 2019.
The BoC earlier said low import volume as well as the stronger peso last year caused it to miss its revenue collection goal.
Finance Secretary Carlos G. Dominguez III said the two agencies still did “a wonderful job” last year but he expects improvements in their performances this year “given the Philippines’ vibrant economic outlook in 2020.”
Mr. Dominguez also commended the BIR’s efforts to collect taxes from errant service providers of Philippine online gaming operators and their foreign employees.
Collections of the BIR and BoC make up bulk of the country’s revenues, with other collections coming from the Bureau of the Treasury and nontax revenue from other offices, such as privatization proceeds and fees.
Official data released last month showed total government revenues as of end-November went up 10.55% to P2.894 trillion, with tax revenues making up 93.39% of the total collections. Meanwhile, spending for the first eleven months rose 6.83% year on year to P3.303 trillion.
This brought the January to November budget deficit to P409.1 billion, which was 14.27% narrower year on year. The latest figure only accounted for 67% of the downgraded P610-billion deficit ceiling for last year.
The government operates on a deficit as it finances projects that cannot be covered by its ability to generate revenue. The country plans to accommodate a budget gap of as much as 3.2% of gross domestic product for the fiscal year 2019-2022.
Sought for comment, UnionBank of the Philippines, Inc., Chief Economist Ruben Carlo O. Asuncion said the collections of the two agencies last year “speak loudly of their historical performances” as they have repeatedly missed their revenue goals despite the reforms and modernization pushed by the government.
Mr. Asuncion said reforms by other countries that the two bureaus can adopt to improve their collection efforts include “major reorganization and even radical abolitions of institutions to effect fundamental change.”
“There are best practices in other countries where reforms have been deeply successful. I think it was either Peru or Chile that went to reorganize its own version of the BIR and eventually improve tax collection and administration,” he said in an e-mail Monday.
Mr. Asuncion added that political backing, presidential authority and leadership all played critical roles when the Peruvian tax reform “master plan” was implemented.
“The crucial assembly and appointment of “the team” by Manuel B. Estela that drafted and designed the “master reform plan” is something that the Philippines could learn from. The trust that was built and the integrity of the various members of the team were also vital in the success of the reform,” he said in an earlier research paper.
During its 176th meeting last July, the Development Budget Coordination Committee tasked the two agencies to collect a total of P3.3 trillion this year, 17.85% higher than last year’s goal.
Broken down, the BIR has a collection target of P2.576 trillion this year, while the BoC has to collect P731.235 billion, which are both over 10% higher compared to their respective targets in 2019.
The retail prices of fish, poultry and vegetables have become so
expensive that they are beyond acceptable, prompting the Department of
Agriculture (DA) to crack down against profiteering and run after all
those “heartless businessmen.”
Some prices have not gone down to how they were before Christmas, the
DA noted on Friday, as the agency spotted huge discrepancies between
the price of these products when sold in farms and when sold in the
The local galunggong is even more expensive than pork, the DA said,
since the poor man’s fish are now sold up to P280 per kilo, where as the
retail price of pork ranges from P180 to P220 per kilo.
“Obviously, some traders and sellers refuse to reduce prices to
pre-Christmas levels, and are taking advantage of the recent eruption of
Taal Volcano,” said Agriculture Secretary William D. Dar.
Dar issued a department order last month, tasking all
concerned officials and staff to regularly monitor the food supply and
price situation, particularly of poultry, fish and vegetables.
Department Order No. 3 reiterated the agency’s powers as authorized
under the Price Law, which was created to prevent and take action
against those that manipulate prices of primary and basic commodities.
Violators of illegal price manipulation can be jailed for up to 15 years and slapped a fine of up to P2 million.
Under the Price Act, the DA is the main implementing agency in
ensuring stability of prices with reference to agricultural crops, fish
and other marine products, fresh meat, fresh poultry and dairy products,
and fertilizers, among other farm inputs.
“With this latest Department issuance, we aim to protect the welfare
of consumers, and farmers ans fisherfolk — who are themselves
consumers,” the DA chief said.
“Thus, we warn unscrupulous and heartless businessmen, traders and
retailers who take advantage of their countrymen. Rest assured that the
guilty profiteers will not go unpunished in accordance with the law,” he
Honda Cars will close by March 2020. Nokia, Wells Fargo and Nissan
will soon also close shop in the Philippines. Philippine Airlines will
layoff 300 personnel as the airline suffers revenue loss due to travel
bans because of COVID-19.
Even government workers are not spared from layoffs, as thousands of
NFA employees are set to lose their jobs as the agency released the Rice
Import Liberalization Law’s implementing rules and regulations (IRR).
According to the technical working group for the law’s IRR, a
conservative estimate sees the displacement of 1,134 workers during the
first phase of NFA’s restructuring plan, or about 27 percent of its
4,136 workforce nationwide.
Meanwhile, the proposed PHP9.39-billion cut in the budget of the
Department of Health (DOH) for 2020 could result in job losses for some
7,107 public health nurses.
Another obvious consequence of the outbreak of COVID-19 in the region
is the drop in tourism. House Deputy Speaker Johnny Pimentel urged the
government to brace for a drop in tourism resulting to loss of thousands
Lastly, the government is bent on pushing through with its jeepney
modernization program, and several Filipinos won’t be able to afford the
modernized jeepneys. We can expect a lot more Pinoys to be unemployed
by the phaseout of the old jeepneys.
Tax hikes implemented at the start of the year jacked up prices of
food, oil and sin products, resulting in a six-month high inflation rate
among poor families in January.
The Philippine Statistics Authority’s (PSA) report on the consumer
price index (CPI) for bottom 30-percent income households in January
released on Thursday showed that the rate of increase in prices of basic
commodities rose 2.3 percent year-on-year that month, the highest since
July last year’s 2.7 percent.
The PSA said prices of food and nonalcoholic beverages, which weighed heavily in the CPI, inched up 0.7 percent in January.
National Statistician Claire Dennis Mapa earlier
explained that prices of beef, chicken, fish and vegetables rose last
month as a result of the eruption of Taal Volcano, which affected farms
in the Calabarzon region.
Prices of alcoholic drinks and tobacco products, meanwhile, climbed 22.4 percent year-on-year in January.
Excise taxes slapped on sin products such as cigarettes, e-cigarettes
and alcohol further increased as two laws—Republic Act No. 11346 and RA
No. 11467—jacked up rates effective Jan. 1.
Mapa had said cigarettes and alcoholic beverages accounted
for 2.4 percent of the CPI basket among bottom 30-percent income
households—a bigger share than the 1.6 percent for overall national
Also, transport costs increased 3.5 percent year-on-year, while
prices of housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels rose 2.7
percent last month.
The third tranche of oil excise tax hike under the Tax Reform for
Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) Act also took effect on Jan. 1.
The TRAIN law slapped higher levy on consumption to compensate for the lower and restructured personal income tax rates.
The other commodity groups that jacked up inflation among poor families
at the start of the year included education (up 5.2 percent
year-on-year), recreation and culture (up 2.9 percent) and communication
(up 0.4 percent).
The cost of availing restaurant and miscellaneous goods and services
rose 2.6 percent last month, but a slower pace than the increment in
The food alone index increased by a faster 0.6 percent year-on-year
in January from 0.1 percent last December, as most commodities posted
price hikes save for rice (down 6.5 percent year-on-year), corn (down
2.6 percent), as well as sugar, jam, honey, chocolate and confectionery
(down 3.3 percent).
Retail prices of rice were declining since May last year amid
liberalized importation of the Filipino staple food under the rice
Starting this year, the PSA’s monthly CPI for bottom 30-percent
households report was rebased to the year 2012 from 2000 previously.
A three-year old tax case that allowed bilyonaryo Lucio Tan’s
Northern Tobacco Redrying Co. to pay just P199,415.80 out of the
original assessed value of P89.8 million got netizens riled up.
2017 report by the Philippine Daily Inquirer has resurfaced, detailing
how the Court of Tax Appeals sided with Northern Tobacco and
significantly slashed the Tan-owned firm’s tax obligation.
declared the property-share swap implemented by North Tobacco as a
tax-free transaction. This meant the cancellation of P10.55 million
value tax and P61.6 million improperly accumulated earnings tax.