Roxas: Concrete action from gov't on oil price hikes needed now

Thursday, March 13, 2008 | posted in , , , , , , | 0 comments

Senator Mar Roxas said that the executive must get its act together and ensure concrete measures to protect the consuming public in light of further spikes in local pump prices as oil prices worldwide continue to escalate, eventually affecting the prices of key commodities in the end.
The hardships our people were facing six months ago have not changed. They are even more pressured now to make ends meet,” he said.

Sa panahon ngayon, higit na kailangan ng mga tao ang pera nila, kaysa pangangailangan ng gobyerno sa buwis. Ang panawagan natin sa pamahalaan: suportahan na ang pag-suspinde sa VAT sa langis para sa kagyat na ginhawa ang ating mga mamimili,” he said.
In today’s hearing of the Senate Committee on Trade and Commerce, it was revealed that pump prices may still go up by P2 to P3 per liter, to factor in the latest world crude oil price spikes: Dubai crude at $96.92 per barrel and New York crude at almost $109 per barrel. Local oil companies have already hiked prices by P1 in the past two weeks.

Roxas, chairman of the Trade Committee, also said that prices of other key food products continue to increase, as world supply tightens up.
The outlook is not very good. Fuel and rice are going to remain expensive. Chicken and pork prices are okay now, but eventually, their prices will be affected by the world supply dynamic of corn, grains and other feeds,” he said.

Yung mga dati-rating nag-e-export ay hindi na nag-e-export ngayon, dahilan sa kinain na ng Tsina ang surplus nila, o kinakailangan na nila itong mga produktong ito. Itong sitwasyon na mataas ang presyo ng mga produktong ito ay, palagay ko, mananatili,” he noted.

Kailangan na ngayon ng kongkretong kilos mula sa pamahalaan para sa kapakanan ng mga mamimili, tulad ng pag-suspinde ng VAT sa langis.” he said.
Roxas, author of Senate Bill No. 1962 calling for a six-month suspension on the 12% value-added tax (VAT) on oil products, noted that he is open to other proposals—to scrap VAT on oil altogether or to reduce it to 6%, as what Senator Juan Ponce Enrile proposed in today’s hearing.

The Senate has already deliberated on Senate Bill No. 1962, and a committee report has already been drafted, only awaiting action from the House of Representatives. Pursuant to the Constitution, tax measures must originate and be passed in the House before being taken up in the Senate plenary. Liberal Party Secretary-General and Cavite Rep. Joseph Emilio “Jun” Abaya has filed his counterpart bill which is now pending in committee.

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Kevin Ray N. Chua

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