The temporary reduction in tariffs on imported pork, which was intended to curb inflation, will cost the government 5.4 billion. Crowns in disposed of tax revenue by the end of this year, the Treasury said.
Finance Secretary Antonette Tionko told reporters that Executive Order (EO) No. 134, which reduced import duties on pork and increased quotas, had already resulted in P2.52 billion in revenue losses since it was implemented in April.
The government has also so far lost P11.4 million in tax revenue due to the reduction in tariffs on rice imported from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). EO No. 135, which allowed for this tariff adjustment on rice, went into effect in June and lapses in June next year, when the volume of prior revenue is expected to hit £ 40.9 million, Tionko said.
Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III pointed out that “the loss of revenue slowed the rise in pork prices” in the case of EO No. 134. Pork prices had steadily risen in late 2020 up to the beginning of this year due to the African pig fever crisis.
“It (EO No. 134) has really stopped the rise in [pork] prices by adding more supply, ”Dominguez said. “We look at the health of the entire economy and human well-being. It’s worth losing some revenue so people’s food costs do not rise. ”
As for EO No. 135, Dominguez said it was “common sense” to reduce the most favored national tariffs imposed on rice imports outside Southeast Asia.
“We are one of the largest rice buyers in the world, and why should we leave it to buy from ourselves [the Asean region]. Vietnam buys a lot of rice from India. Vietnam actually buys a lot of broken rice from India. They make it into noodles, and then they eat and export good quality rice. It’s just international trade; you [get your supply] from where it is cheapest, ”said the CFO.
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