House panel approves P20 tax on single use plastic bags

RG Cruz, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Dec 11 2019 08:13 PM

MANILA - A House panel on Wednesday approved a bill seeking to impose a P20 excise tax on single-use plastic bags. 

Albay Rep. Joey Salceda, chair of the House Committee on Ways and Means, said revenues from the measure will be used to fund the Ecological Solid Waste Management Act of 2002.

By taxing single-use plastic bags, the measure aims to promote the use of environment-friendly alternatives, the bill's authors said. 

During the hearing, Salceda noted that neighboring countries already banned or taxed single-use plastic bags. 

“In Indonesia, it's P4; in Malaysia it's P3; for Myanmar, you will be brought to jail if you use it,” Salceda said.

He added the bill also aims to encourage the public to reuse plastic bags as many times as possible. 

The Philippine Plastic Industry Association meanwhile said the proposed tax was discriminatory and that other packaging options should also be taxed.

Salceda said they will also draft a bill imposing a tax on plastic sachets, which he said form the bulk of the waste clogging waterways and filling up landfills.