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Proposal of exempting VAT from basic goods

In a recent bill (House Bill-5504), the House of Representatives urged the government to exempt basic goods from VAT, including bread, raw and refined sugar, canned goods, instant noodles, biscuits, cooking oil, salt, laundry detergents, firewood and charcoal, candles, and drugs labelled “essential” by the Health Department.

 HB 5504 aims to ease the economic burden of rising prices and a falling peso for ordinary Filipinos.

As lead representative of this bill, Arlene Brosas, Assistant Minority Leader, pointed out that: “Removing the 12-percent VAT on basic goods consumed by poor families on a regular basis will dramatically ease their economic suffering amid skyrocketing prices, massive joblessness, and depressed wages”.

Additionally, she noted that the revenues lost under the proposed VAT exemption could easily be recouped by imposing a wealth tax on the wealthiest Filipinos.

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