BIR defers VAT on toll until end-April

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Mar 31 2010 02:29 PM | Updated as of Apr 01 2010 02:59 AM

MANILA, Philippines - The Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) has decided to delay the imposition of the 12% value-added tax on toll fees until the end of the month.

The BIR wanted to impose the VAT starting April 1, Maundy Thursday, when many motorists are expected to go home to the provinces for the long weekend break. The tax agency's order was contested by the Toll Regulatory Board (TRB).

"I agreed to a deferral not later than April 30," BIR Commissioner Joel Tan-Torres said in a text message to reporters.

Tan-Torres' decision came after his agency met with the TRB in line with Malacañang's position that an agreement be made before the target implementation of the VAT on toll.

The said meeting was presided over by Executive Secretary Leandro Mendoza and Finance Secretary Margarito Teves, BIR deputy commissioner Nelson Aspe told ANC's Dateline Philippines in an earlier interview.

"According to BIR's representatives, Secretaries Mendoza and Teves were suggesting a deferment until April 30," Aspe said.

The BIR was earlier bent on imposing the VAT on toll whether or not toll operators would pass this on to motorists.

Malacañang did not oppose the move, citing the government's need to raise additional revenues to cover the budget deficit and to fund pro-poor programs.

The BIR expects to rake in P1.3 billion annually from the VAT on toll