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MANILA, Philippines - The Department of Finance (DOF) has expressed support for the proposal of Navotas Rep. Tobias Tiangco to exempt income of up to P30,000 a month or P360,000 a year from taxation.

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Tiangco said yesterday DOF Undersecretary Karl Kendrich Chua supported his bill during a hearing of the House of Representatives Committee on Ways and Means Wednesday.
In fact, he said Chua told the committee that their proposal hews closely with his bill.
“My office is ready and willing to work with the DOF to ensure the swift passage of the tax reform program. It is high time our taxpayers enjoy their hard-earned money,” he said.
“We have the same goal in mind: to remove income tax for low-income earners and reduce it for other workers and even corporate executives,” he stressed.
Aside from exempting income of up to P30,000 a month from taxation, Tiangco is proposing to adjust the income tax brackets to approximate current consumer prices.
“The current system of taxation is severely outdated and is no longer fair and equitable. It is a fact that Congress determined the tax brackets now provided under the law as early as 1986. They have remained unchanged to date. On the other hand, the increase in inflation has gone up as high as 300 percent,” he said.
“With the current income tax brackets, the Philippines effectively imposes the highest personal income tax in the whole ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) region,” he said.
Even before President Duterte assumed office last June 30, then finance secretary-designate Carlos Dominguez advocated the reduction of individual and corporate income taxes.
However, nearly three months into the new administration, Dominguez has not presented concrete proposals to the House, where tax measures must emanate.
Two weeks ago, he announced that to recoup billions in revenues expected to be lost from income tax cuts, the DOF would have to push for new taxes, like imposing a P6 per liter levy on diesel, kerosene and cooking gas, and increasing the excise tax on gasoline from less than P5 per liter to P10.
Some tax exemptions for senior citizens would also be withdrawn.
SOURCE: PHILSTAR

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