The Asia CEO Forum was held on Friday, July 27, 2018 at the Clark Freeport and Special Economic Zone, discussing TRAIN Package 2. Among those in attendance were ecozone locators, a sector which has expressed its concern about the foregoing bill. Mon Abrea, the Philippine Tax Whiz and Founding President of the Asian Consulting Group, attended as one of the resource speakers, along with Asec. Teresa Habitan (DOF Assistant Secretary), Mr. Frank Villanueva (President of Clark Investors and Locators Association), and Mr. Daniel Alexander (Group Country Manager of Converga Asia).
Congressman Dakila Cua, who sponsored a version of TRAIN 2, has recently discussed the tax reform package at the General Membership Meeting of the Tax Management Association of the Philippines last Thursday, July 26.
Notably, President Duterte has expressed his commitment to passing TRAIN 2 into law, but the bill has not found support in the Senate.
Mon Abrea, a longtime tax reform advocate, agreed that the most likely culprit to the lack of support was the first package of TRAIN Law.
“We need to review the implementation and the actual effects of TRAIN Law,” Abrea said. “Only when we address this can taxpayers be assured to move on to TRAIN 2.”
The tax reform advocate has also emphasized that the rationalization of tax incentives – which remains to be a contentious portion of the proposal – should not be a pre-requisite to the lowering the corporate income tax.
Another tax reform package which has garnered little attention in the State of the Nation Address was the TRAIN Package 1B.
“If we want taxpayers to avail the general tax amnesty program, we need to make it simpler and more acceptable,” added Abrea.
The availment of the general tax amnesty would also not be the last step in improving the tax system and should instead be considered the first step. To implement a better tax system, taxpayers need to be better at complying with regulations as well.
The Asian Consulting Group’s Citizen Tax Planning (CTP) implements, as part of its advocacy, a comprehensive tax plan that will ensure businesses would no longer be burdened with unnecessary fines, penalties, and compromises. For more information, visit www.acg.ph or e-mail us at [email protected]