CLARK FREEPORT The Clark Investors and Locators (CILA) Board said it "is now in the process of finalizing strategies to question the implementing rules and Regulations of the CREATE Law and various issuances of the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR)."

This came after a CILA member was allegedly issued a Template of Undertaking by the Clark Development Corporation (CDC) prior to the renewal of its permit.

"It has come to the attention of the CILA Board of Directors that one of our members was issued with a Template of Undertaking prior to the approval of its filed permit," the CILA Board said in a press statement dated August 2, 2022.

Provision Number 4 of the undertaking states "Our company undertakes to pay the duties and taxes on the articles we have imported to the BOC -- Port of Clark upon the issuance of the relevant circular by the appropriate national government agency such as the BOC, BIR or the FIRB that we are not entitled to duty and taxes exempt importation, retroactive upon effectivity of the CREATE law or such later date as determined by said national government agency."

The CIAC board has decried this provision and the undertaking itself claiming locators are estopped from directly quetioning onerous issuances.

Republic Act 11354 or the Create Law slashes the country's Corporate Income Tax (CIT) from 30 to 25 percent.

Under this law, domestic firms with a taxable income of P5 million and below and total assets of not more than P100 million, their CIT will be cut from 30 to 20 percent.

Republic Act Number 9400 or the Bases Conversion and Development Act provides that "the Clark Freeport shall be operated and managed as a separate customs territory ensuring free flow or movement of goods and capital equipment within, into and exported out of the zone as well as provide incentives such as tax and duty-free importation of raw materials

and capital equipment.

However, exportation or removal of goods from the Clark Freeport territory to other parts of the country shall be subject to customs duties and taxes under the Tariff and Customs Code of the Philippines.

The group's statement was signed by CILA Chair Francisco Villanueva Jr, Vice Chairman Radito Tuazon, President Christopher Magdangal, Executive Vice President Evelyn Yumul, Tresurer Maximino Gulmayo Jr., Corporate Secretary Gerald Medina, PRO Darwin Malinit, and directors Lito Mercado, Ralph Morales and Armi Pajarillo.

"The paramount purpose of CILA will always be for the upliftment of the causes of its members, in particular and Clark locators in general," the CILA board stressed.

Sunstar Pampanga tried to get a statement from CDC regarding the issue as of presstime but to no avail.