FIRB OKays tax perks for P228.8-B telco projects
Four telcos’ new projects to improve broadband services, worth a total of P228.8 billion, have been granted tax-exempt status and other perks by the Fiscal Incentives Review Board (FIRB).
In a statement on Wednesday, the Department of Finance (DOF) said the interagency FIRB recently approved Converge ICT Solutions Inc.’s registration with the Board of Investments (BOI) for its nationwide rollout of a fiber optic network paving the way for high speed broadband in the country. Converge is owned by Pampanga’s Dennis Anthony Uy.
“The fiber broadband rollout project was granted four years of income tax holiday, followed by five years of enhanced deductions, and 11 years of duty exemption on importations of capital equipment, raw materials, spare parts or accessories from the date of registration, unless otherwise extended in the Strategic Investment Priority Plan (SIPP),” the DOF said. SIPP is a list of select sectors and projects qualified to enjoy fiscal and other incentives from investment promotion agencies.
Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III, who is also FIRB chair, said he expected Converge to fulfill its promise of better and cheaper internet in unserved and underserved communities.
Three telecommunication tower companies—Frontier Tower Associates Philippines Inc., SkyTowers Infra Inc. and Transcend Towers Infrastructure Philippines Inc.—were likewise granted tax incentives by the FIRB for P78.2 billion worth of investments.
“These three telcos were granted by the FIRB with the same incentives package given Converge, but on condition that all of their towers will be built and located in areas that now lack service,” the DOF said.
“The approval of these projects is urgent, given the current gap in the number of towers needed to service our population. We are optimistic that these approved applications will pave the way for our country to finally have improved connectivity and more quality service,” FIRB secretariat head and Finance Assistant Secretary Juvy Danofrata said.
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