FOLLOWING the full implementation of the Tax Reform Acceleration and Inclusion Law, Benguet province is seeking the help of the Department of Trade and Industry in monitoring and prices of basic commodities.
The national tax reform law took effect January 1 which adjusts personal income tax rates while imposing higher tax on fuels/oils, cars, and sugar-sweetened beverages. Benguet Governor Crescencio Pacalso said with the pending increase of fuel prices, they are expecting traders to use it as a reason to raise prices of different goods.
"We inform the DTI to look into this to set a guideline for the suggested retail prices for basic commodities. And I think they are already doing that," said Pacalso. Based on data from the Bureau of Internal Revenue, around 6.8 million or 90 percent of the 7.5 million individual income tax payers will be exempt from paying taxes starting this year, more than triple of the current two million exempt minimum wage earners.
Board Member Jim Botiwey said with the new law, local businesses will also be affected by the new law. "I believe the new law has no direct effect on the local business although sa operation mayroong bearing kasi tataas iyong krudo kaya may effect doon sa operations," said Botiwey.
"We cannot also blame local government units on increasing taxes because again lifeblood ng operation ng LGU for that matter the national government is tax," said Botiwey. "We are hoping that all the tax being generated by the National Government and local government should really go to the people."
Botiwey added the new law will be felt in just barely two months. "Number one tataas iyong transportation, number two tataas iyong goods. It is sad again that the decrease of tax pupunta rin sa increase na babayaran natin. It's just getting one money from one pocket putting it in another pocket," Botiwey added.
By Lauren Alimondo