DTI expects new CITIRA Senate draft by year’s end

Guadalupe Pasig skyline 101419 - DTI expects new CITIRA Senate draft by year’s endBW FILE PHOTO

THE tax reform bill lowering corporate income tax and rationalizing fiscal incentives will be filed with the Senate by the end of December, Trade Secretary Ramon M. Lopez told reporters Tuesday, incorporating input from its investor constituencies that could provide for longer transition periods away from older incentive schemes.

Mr. Lopez said that the new version of the proposed Corporate Income Tax and Incentives Rationalization Act (CITIRA), representing the second package of the government’s comprehensive tax program, will address the “specific needs and interests of stakeholders.”

He added that input from the Department of Finance (DoF), the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), and the private sector have been considered.

The transition period for exiting old incentive schemes and terms of new investment incentives continue to be contentious, he said.

“There are provisions being worked so that we can improve the support for the new projects,” he said.

The DoF supports the two to five-year transition period in the bill approved by the House of Representatives, while the DTI is pushing for a five to seven-year transition period in general and a seven to 10-year transition for companies that employ over 3,000 people.

“It will be subject to further deliberation in the Senate,” Mr. Lopez said.

“You can expect due consideration concerns raised in preliminary senate committee hearings — you can expect consideration on these positions,” Mr. Lopez said.

Senate Majority Leader Juan Miguel F. Zubiri in September said that the Senate is considering a longer transition period while increasing the gross income earned rate to seven percent from five percent. — Jenina P. Ibañez

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