MANILA - The House of Representatives approved the proposed sin tax law amendment on second reading in Wednesday's plenary session.
The approval paves the way for a vote on third readiing before Congress goes on Christmas vacation next week.
Earlier, House Majority Leader Rodolfo Fariñas said the bill amending the sin tax law to impose a higher two-tiered tax rate on tobacco by January 2017 will likely be passed by the House on third and final reading next week.
House Bill 4144, authored by ABS party-list Rep. Eugene Michael de Vera, was sponsored on the floor by ways and means committee chair Dakila Carlo Cua.
The bill seeks to amend Republic Act 10351, otherwise known as the Sin Tax Reform Act, which took effect on January 1, 2013.
It introduced higher excise tax rates for alcohol and tobacco prodcuts and signaled the move toward a unitary rate system by next year and indexed the tax rate to inflation by increasing it gradually to 4 percent annually.