MANILA, Philippines - After implementing a moratorium on rice importation, the government slashed its budget for next year's tax expenditure by 61%.
Data from the Department of Finance showed that the 2011 tax expenditure fund (TEF) has been programmed at P5.25 billion, a significant decline of P8.1 billion from last year's P13.349 billion.
TEF is a subsidy released by the Department of Budget and Management to state-owned and controlled corporations and government financial institutions to settle customs duties and other taxes arising from the importation of goods.
About 95% of the fund was usually given to the National Food Authority (NFA) to cover the 50% tariff imposed on all rice imports.
Earlier, President Benigno Aquino III vowed to stop the government's policy on rice importation and said funds for this would be used to help farmers instead.
The Bureau of Customs said it would likely miss its revenue target of P280 billion this year due to reduced imports.