House opposition wants to suspend excise tax increases on fuel, oil

Opposition lawmakers argue suspending the excise tax increases on fuel and oil products will help curb rising inflation

Mara Cepeda

Published: 12:30 PM September 10, 2018

Updated: 12:30 PM September 10, 2018

RISING. The TRAIN law affects fuel prices. File photo by Ben Nabong/Rappler

MANILA, Philippines – Opposition lawmakers filed a joint resolution seeking to suspend the excise tax increases on fuel and oil products in a bid to address the soaring prices of basic goods. 

On Monday, September 10, the following legislators filed House Joint Resolution (HJR) No. 27 which would “immediately suspend the excise tax increases and scheduled increases on fuel and oil products" stipulated under the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) Law:

Gary Alejano, Magdalo

Teddy Baguilat Jr, Ifugao

Bolet Banal, Quezon City 3rd District

Jose Christopher Belmonte, Quezon City 6th District

Emmanuel Billones, Capiz 1st District

Gabriel Bordado, Camarines Sur 3rd District

Arlene Brosas, Gabriela Women’s Party

Ariel Casilao, Anakpawis

France Castro, ACT Teachers

Raul Daza, Northern Samar 1st District

Sarah Elago, Kabataan

Edgar Erice, Calocaan City 2nd District

Edcel Lagman, Albay 1st District

Miro Quimbo, Marikina 2nd District

Tom Villarin, Akbayan

Carlos Zarate, Bayan Muna

In their joint resolution, the opposition lawmakers said the 6.4% inflation in August coupled with the ongoing rice shortage are a big burden on Filipino families. (READ: House approves Trabaho bill on 3rd reading)

“We have been witness to the adverse and cruel effects of the high inflation rate battering Filipino families like the spiraling of prices of commodities both in markets and talipapas as well as in supermarkets, groceries, and sari-sari stores, families subsisting on instant noddles, and mothers enduring long hours queuing up for a chance to purcahse 3 kilos of NFA (National Food Authority) rice,” said the legislators. 

They said the economic managers of President Rodrigo Duterte “must exhaust all complementary measures” to help ease inflation. 

“Now therefore, be it resolved, as it is hereby resolved by the House of Representatives, and the Senate concurring, to immediately suspend the excise tax increases and scheduled increases on fuel or oil products as imposed by Section 43 of RA (Republic Act) No. 10963, otherwise known as the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) to stem inflation,” said HJR 27. 

Vice President Leni Robredo and Liberal Party (LP) lawmakers earlier called for the passage of the bill that would suspend the excise tax on fuel imposed by the TRAIN Law. The measure has been filed by Senator Paolo Benigno Aquino IV at the Senate and by Quimbo at the House. 

On Monday, Majority Leader Rolando Andaya also said the House leadership will ask the National Price Coordinating Council to submit a report on what it has done so far to address the rising prices of goods. 

Just like a bill, a joint resolution requires the approval of both the House and the Senate and the signature of President. HJR 27 will have the full force and effect of the law if both chambers approve it on 3rd and final reading and if President Rodrigo Duterte signs it.

Read a full copy of HJR 27 below: