MANILA – President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. on Monday appealed to Congress to pass the essential tax measures under the Medium-Term Fiscal Framework.

In his second State of the Nation Address (SONA), Marcos said these include the excise tax on single-use plastics, value added tax (VAT) on digital services, rationalization of mining fiscal regime, motor vehicle user’s charge or road user’s tax, and the military and uniformed personnel (MUP) pension.

These tax measures disclosed by the Department of Finance (DOF) last year aim to steer the country back to a high growth trajectory.

“We therefore seek once again the continued support of Congress to enact into law the policies and reforms under our fiscal framework,” Marcos said.

Under the proposed pension system, MUPs will be required to contribute a portion of their salaries as a form of savings, which will be supplemented by the government.

“The pension of the military and uniformed personnel is as important, urgent, and humanitarian as that of all other civilian Filipino employees. Efforts are underway to make it fully functional and financially sustainable,” Marcos said.

The President also assured they are working closely with Congress to ease the transition process and to guarantee that “no effects are felt by those in the uniformed services.”

Marcos also cited the importance of higher revenue collections in the government’s bid to increase public investments.

“Under our fiscal framework, we envision our tax and revenue efforts to further increase, to up to 16.9 percent and 17.3 percent by 2028,” he said.

Citing data from the Bureau of Internal Revenue, Marcos said that in the first five months of the year, tax collections already amounted to PHP1.05 trillion, higher by 10 percent year-on-year.

Collections of the Bureau of Customs also went up by 7.4 percent to PHP476 billion in the first seven months of 2023.

Marcos said revenues from the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR) and Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) also grew by 47.9 percent and 20 percent, respectively. (PNA)