TRAIN lifts BIR tax collection by 15 percent

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  • The Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR)  posted a 15 percent it growth in its tax collections in January, the first month of the implementation of the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) Act, according to Caesar Dulay, BIR commissioner.

    At this growth level, the collection in January likely hit  P170 billion from P147.4 billion in January 2017.

    Dulay said the tax on sugar-sweetened beverages alone  generated around  P2 billion.

    “That’s a new addition because in 2017 we did not have that tax,” Dulay said.

    The excise tax on sweetened beverages is among the provisions included in the TRAIN.

    Sweetened beverages, drinks using purely caloric sweeteners, and purely non-caloric sweeteners, or a mix of caloric and non-caloric sweeteners are taxed P6 per liter of volume capacity, while those using purely high fructose corn syrup or in combination with any caloric or non-caloric sweetener are taxed P12 per liter.

    Products using purely coconut sap sugar and purely steviol glycosides are exempt from the excise tax.

    Also excluded are all milk products, 100 percent natural fruit juices, 100 percent natural vegetable juices, meal replacement and medically indicated beverages, and ground coffee, instant soluble coffee, and pre-packaged powdered coffee products.

    President Duterte signed last December 19 Package 1 or the TRAIN, which slashed personal income tax (PIT) rates while raising additional revenues through, among others, adjustments in the excise taxes on fuel, coal and automobiles; broadening the value-added tax base and imposing a tax on sugar sweetened beverages.

    Compensation earners across the country started to benefit from the TRAIN in January through increases in their take-home pay as a result of zero or lower PIT rates.

    (Malaya)

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