Duterte to weigh costs of DBCC's new proposal to pursue additional fuel excise tax
President Rodrigo Duterte would weigh the social costs involved in deciding whether he would continue the implementation of additional excise tax on fuel next year, Malacanang said on Friday.
Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo issued the statement after the Development Budget Coordination Committee announced on Thursday it would recommend to Duterte the continued enforcement of the second tranche of excise taxes on petroleum products under Republic Act 10963 or the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) Law.
This was contrary to the first proposal to suspend the implementation of additional fuel excise tax, which Duterte approved, in the wake of skyrocketing prices of oil in the world market previously.
But the DBCC, composed of the economic team of the President, decided not to push with the deferment due to the series of oil price rollbacks during the past weeks as it also sees the continuous easing of oil prices in the world market in the coming days.
Panelo said the latest recommendation of the DBCC would be discussed during the Cabinet meeting on Tuesday, December 4.
"We cannot limit this issue in a purely economic perspective. We note the sentiments of the Filipino consumers and the President will certainly weigh in the social costs involved. Due regard, however, must also be given to the dictates stipulated under the law, which only the Congress can modify,' he said.
He urged the public to wait for Duterte's decision on the matter.
Panelo assured that the President's decision would always be based on the national interest and benefit to the people.
Under the TRAIN Law, the government would impose additional P2-excise tax on oil beginning January next year. The same law also provides that it could suspend it if the average of Dubai crude oil price based on Mean of Platts Singapore (MOPS) for three months prior to the scheduled increase of the month reaches or exceeds $80 per barrel.
But while the price of oil exceeded $80 per barrel previously, for the past weeks, it has been declining. Celerina Monte/DMS