NEGROS Occidental 4th District Representative Jeffrey Ferrer is hoping that Congress approves his proposed bill seeking to exempt raw sugar from value added tax (VAT).

Ferrer is determined to have the bill passed before the Congress adjourns on June 9, according to his legal adviser, Joel Aguilar, in a phone interview Tuesday.

Aguilar said that majority of the members of the House Committee on Ways and Means are supporting House Bill (HB) 5713 authored by Ferrer that seeks exemption of raw sugar from VAT.

Marikina Representative Miro Quimbo, who chairs the committee, pledged to give due attention to the bill.

The committee conducted a hearing on the proposed bill on Tuesday in the presence of Negros Occidental Governor Alfredo Marañon Jr., 2nd District Representative Leo Rafael Cueva, 6th District Representative Mercedes Alvarez, and various sugar planters.

HB 5713 is seeking to amend the National Internal Revenue Code of 1997, by providing for the technical meaning of raw cane sugar to reflect the true intent of Congress in exempting the agricultural product from VAT.

The definition of raw sugar should not exceed from 99.5 percent in the Polari meter, Aguilar stressed.

Raw sugar should have a content of sucrose by weight in the dry state, corresponds to a Polari meter reading of less than 99.5, he added.