Roxas: “Finally, Government’s feet on the ground”

Senator Mar Roxas said it is high time to suspend the value-added tax (VAT) on oil products, now that the government has already “accepted the reality” that it would not meet its “theoretical” target to balance the budget.
Finally, nakaapak na sila sa lupa (their feet are now on the ground)! Because their theory that the budget can be balanced this year, nawala na iyan matagal na eh (has been abandoned for some time already),” an exasperated Roxas said during the Kapihan sa Senado held on Thursday.

When oil was at $90 per barrel at the beginning of the year, nawala na iyan eh (the assumption’s invalid already). The economic growth for 2008 would necessarily be affected,” he explained. He said oil prices now are four times more expensive than when the expanded VAT was still being deliberated.
He also pointed out that the President has supposedly allotted P40 billion for the Agriculture “FIELDS” program, aside from continuing with rice subsidies through NFA, the budgets for which are not in the original budget.

The Chairman of the Senate Committee on Trade and Commerce pointed out that when the proposal to impose a 12% VAT on oil was still being deliberated, Dubai crude was still around $34 per barrel. Now, the price of Dubai crude has reached $120 per barrel. This means if the government earlier expected to collect around $4 of VAT per barrel of crude, it now collects around $14 per barrel, or excess revenue of around $10 per barrel.

Ang laki-laki na ng nakokolekta ng gobyerno, higit doon sa original na inaasahan nila mula rito. Bakit pa nila ipinagdadamot ito (Government’s collecting so much more than what it originally expected. So why are they refusing to return it to consumers)?” he said.
The Liberal Party President stressed that if the government really wants to help consumers and protect the “real economy” at this time of crisis, it must immediately support moves to suspend or remove VAT on oil.

Maaari na ayaw nila ito sa simula. Noong nasa $90 per barrel ang langis, tinanggihan nila ito. Ngayon na nasa $130 per barrel na ang langis, mukhang nagkakaroon ito ng buhay sa Kamara. Kahit ano pa man ang gusto ng Malacañang, itong demokrasya dito, batay ito sa kagustuhan ng ating mga kababayan. Nilagay natin sila diyan, dapat hindi nila ipagdamot itong pera kasi hindi nila pera ito. Pera ng sambayanan ito,” he said.

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Kevin Ray N. Chua

Kevin Ray N. Chua is a 19 year-old blogger from Cebu City, Philippines and an IT Student at Cebu Institute of Technology.

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2 Responses So far
on June 1, 2008 at 2:27 PM  

I hope all legislators will continue exploring ways for Filipinos to have more stuff to buy with its meager income.

At the same time, reduce cost, so that limited government earning can be appropriated to where it is needed the most.

Kevin Ray
on June 1, 2008 at 2:55 PM  

Indeed Ma'am Janette! Senator Mar Roxas has really kept in touched with the current Filipino people's living conditions. Everything is going up from prices of basic commodities, jeepney fares, oil, electricity, etc.

I agree that all of our legislators would act to help the Filipinos. Senator Roxas can't do it all alone. We need to set our political differences for the good of our country.

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