Unpaid land reform taxes reach P1.04-B

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Saturday, March 29, 2014


UNPAID taxes of the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (Carp) properties in 19 municipalities in Negros Occidental reached P1.047 billion as of March 28, 2014, records of the Provincial Treasurer's Office (PTO) showed.

The figure does not include yet the unpaid land reform taxes in the 12 component cities in the province.

Of the 19 municipalities, Murcia has the highest delinquency pegged at P112.703 million. Murcia is followed by Isabela with P104.566 million; Moises Padilla, P94.627 million; La Castellana, P91.627 million; Manapla, P85.168 million; Pontevedra, P83.113 million; Hinigaran, P72.229 million; E.B. Magalona, P68.005 million; Ilog, P65.603 million; Calatrava, P57.794 million; Binalbagan, P37.612 million; and Valladolid, P36.092 million.

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The report was released by the PTO, as national scientist and economist Raul Fabella gave a talk on the Carp at the Social Hall of the Provincial Capitol Friday.

Fabella, a professor at the University of the Philippines School of Economics, earlier said that land reform must end because its implementation has been a big failure. Read the related story here.

He added that Carp has not also reduced poverty among majority of the beneficiaries.

During the forum Friday, Fabella pointed out that there are a number of factors that contributed to the poor performance of Carp that is related to the capacity of the state to deliver.

One is the protracted implementation of Carp, and the other is the incompleteness of the awards in the form of collective Certificates of Land Ownership Award (CLOAs).

He added that Carp has dragged on for over two decades now which means that Philippine agricultural economy has suffered two decades of ill-defined and contested property rights leading to highly uncertain investment climate in agriculture.

Fabella added that long after the land has been acquired, property rights of beneficiaries remain unsettled, as about 70 percent of the CLOAs awarded to beneficiaries remain collective.

Collective CLOAs involve one million farmers and two million hectares, he said, and these are property rights in legal limbo representing an even more complete denial of the CLOAs.

The Carp Extension with Reforms (Carper), a five-year extension of the Carp, will end in June this year.

Published in the Sun.Star Bacolod newspaper on March 29, 2014.

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