85% of economic agenda achieved, says Dominguez
The tax reforms enacted so far alongside the implementation of big-ticket infrastructure projects under the ambitious “Build, Build, Build” program allowed the Duterte administration to accomplish thus far about 85 percent of its economic agenda, Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III said.
In a statement on Wednesday, Dominguez said the comprehensive tax reform program and “Build, Build, Build” were among “the key achievements of the Duterte presidency.”
“If you look at his presidency, I think as a whole he has been quite successful. In the economic side, which I and [Socioeconomic Planning Secretary] Karl Kendrick Chua and several others are involved in, I think we have achieved maybe 85 percent of what we set out to do,” he said.
The tax measures passed under the Duterte administration included the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) Law, which reduced personal income tax rates while jacking up levy on consumption; the Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises (CREATE) Law, which slashed businesses’ income tax rates during the pandemic while rationalizing the fiscal perks which investors enjoy; the Tax Amnesty Law covering delinquencies and estate taxes, and two sin tax laws which further raised excise slapped on cigarettes, e-cigarettes and alcoholic drinks.
In a separate statement, Chua, who heads state planning agency National Economic and Development Authority (Neda), said three pending bills aimed at relaxing restrictions on foreign capital “will help generate more jobs and accelerate our economic recovery.”
These are the proposed amendments to the Public Service Act, Retail Trade Liberalization Act and the Foreign Investment Act, which the President in his final State of the Nation Address last Monday urged Congress to pass within his last year in office.
“The Philippines has a very good labor force. With these reforms, we can benefit from world-class capital, technology and innovation. The amendments to the Public Service Act will usher in a possibility that we have far better options for telecommunications and transportation,” Chua said.
“The amendments to the Retail Trade Liberalization Act will lower the requirements for foreign participation in the retail sector to facilitate greater competition, lower prices and higher quality of goods to Filipino consumers,” the Neda chief said.
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