Philippine Daily Inquirer - - NEWS - By Philip C. Tubeza @pc­tubeza­INQ

The gov­ern­ment pro­posal to im­pose ex­cise taxes on fuel could lead to price in­creases that would bur­den poor Filipinos, two sen­a­tors said on Sun­day.

Sen. Sonny An­gara, chair of the Se­nate ways and means com­mit­tee, said the Depart­ment of So­cial Wel­fare and De­vel­op­ment (DSWD) was against the P6 ex­cise tax on fuel un­der the ad­min­is­tra­tion’s pro­posed tax re­form pro­gram be­cause that would mean an ad­di­tional P10 daily ex­pense for poor fam­i­lies.

In­crease in in­fla­tion

Se­nate Mi­nor­ity Leader Franklin Drilon said im­pos­ing the ex­cise tax on fuel would lead to a 1.5-per­cent in­crease in in­fla­tion.

“A DSWD of­fi­cial came [to the Se­nate hear­ing] and op­posed this pro­posal be­cause, first of all, it is too high and the ex­penses of an or­di­nary fam­ily or a poor fam­ily could go up by P10,” An­gara said in a ra­dio in­ter­view. “That is why it’s called inflationary.”

He said the Depart­ment of Fi­nance rec­og­nized this and coun­tered that the gov­ern­ment would pour in P300,000 a month to the con­di­tional cash trans­fer pro­gram to help af­fected poor Filipinos.

“But the DSWD un­der­sec­re­tary ... said they might have a prob­lem with dis­tribut­ing that be­cause as many as 20 mil­lion would be hit by the ex­cise tax on fuel,” he said.

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