(Source: Inside Retail Philippines | 22 June 2016)
Tax reforms topped the recommendations presented to President-elect Rodrigo Duterte during a two-day business consultation.
In a specially-convened Duterte business briefing, more than 400 business leaders from around the Philippines gathered in Davao City to discuss the incoming administration’s 10-point socio-economic agenda. In their recommendation to the incoming president, they emphasised the need to lower tax rates on corporate income, personal income and capital gains, said Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry president George Barcelon.
“The participants suggested that the tax rates and tax system be pegged to that of Singapore and Hong Kong. There are also suggestions not only to bring down the tax rates to the levels of our ASEAN neighbors but even make this a little lower to attract foreign investors.”
Business leaders also recommended the simplification of the country’s tax system, particularly for micro, small and medium enterprises.
“To fill in the deficit that will be left by the reduced tax rates, participants suggested increasing excise taxes by expanding the definition of luxury goods, among others,” Barcelon said.
Second top proposal was the need for a national identification system, which is seen as a tool to ensure better-targeted social services.
Incoming finance secretary Carlos Dominguez“ led the event, “Sulong Pilipinas: Hakbang Tungo sa Kaunlaran,” in partnership with the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry and Mindanao Business Council.
Also in attendance were Manila-based business giants, including Ayala Corp’s Jaime Agusto Zobel de Ayala, Ayala Land’d Bobby Dy and BDO Unibank’s Nestor Tan.