Duterte eyeing suspension of fuel excise tax

PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte on Tuesday, October 9, admitted that he was mulling the suspension of excise taxes on petroleum products in an effort to cushion the impact of soaring prices of goods.

"Maybe," the President told Palace reporters, when asked if he is considering the suspension of excise taxes on fuel.

The country's headline inflation rate reached 6.7 percent in September, the highest in nine years.

Under the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Train (Train) Act signed by Duterte in December 2017, hefty excise tax increases of P1, P2.50, P7, and P3, respectively, were imposed on liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), diesel, gasoline, and kerosene this year.

By 2019, excise tax on LPG will increase to P2, diesel to P4.50, gasoline to P9, and kerosene to P4.

The Train Law provides that the scheduled increase in the excise tax on fuel for next year may be suspended when the average Dubai crude oil price based on Mean of Platts Singapore for three months prior to the scheduled increase of the month reaches, or exceeds, $80 per barrel.

On October 7, Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon said the President can suspend fuel excise taxes by requesting a resolution from Congress. (Ruth Abbey Gita/SunStar Philippines)


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