Taxes under serious study by BBM’s economic team

Taxes under serious study by BBM’s economic team

By Tracy Cabrera

MANILA — Amidst concerns over the country’s bloated debt that has reached nearly PhP13 trillion, acting presidential spokesperson Martin Andanar has expressed confidence that the incoming administration of President-elect Ferdinand ‘Bongbong’ Marcos Jr. and his economic team will be able to set up the right policies that would balance debt payment and the government’s budgetary needs to sustain the country’s growth thrust for the next six years.

In a statement, the Palace official enthused that it will be the incoming Marcos administration that would decide whether additional taxes will be imposed to generate more revenues for debt payments or else defer tax exemptions.

Prior to this, the finance department had proposed to raise taxes or temporarily suspend tax exemptions, but Andanar revealed that although the matter was of serious concern to the incoming administration, the decision would be left to the next economic managers who would be appointed by the President-elect.
“We leave this matter, and other ways to mobilize resources, to the wisdom of the President-elect’s economic team,” President Rodrigo Duterte’s acting spokesperson spelled out.

Earlier this week, finance officials had recommended a “doable” set of measures to pay the country’s debts, including raising revenues, improving tax administration, and cutting unnecessary spending with fiscal reforms.

This is a knee-jerk reaction to the huge debt incurred by the outgoing Duterte administration allocated to boost the country’s Covid-19 response program.
The nominated members of Marcos Jr.s’ economic team have yet to publicly comment on the proposal of the finance department. Under the Marcos administration, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) governor Benjamin Diokno is set to lead the finance department while Monetary Board member Felipe Medalla will take the helm of the central bank.

The incoming president has also asked former National Economic and Development Authority (NED) chief Arsenio Balisacan to return to the agency and former University of the Philippines (UP) President Alfredo Pascual to serve as trade secretary under his government setup. (ai/mtvn)

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