SINAG calls on gov’t to remove VAT, fuel excise tax to keep food prices low

Mico Abarro, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Mar 05 2022 12:15 PM

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MANILA—Samahang Industriya ng Agrikultura (SINAG) on Saturday called on government to remove the 12 percent value-added tax and excise tax on fuel to keep food prices from rising. 

"Last year pa hinihingi natin na tanggalin ’yung 12 percent VAT and ’yung excise tax ng fuel. At the time ang diesel nasa P52 lang. Umaangal na ’yung mga farmers natin kase pinaparating na natin sa government na tataas ang mga produkto," SINAG president Rosendo So told ABS-CBN's Teleradyo.

So explained that suspending both taxes would lower fuel prices by up to P7 per liter. 

He added that higher fuel prices not only affected crops, but also other staples such as fish, pork, and chicken, because farmers used feeds that were also influenced by higher oil prices. 

" ’Yung hito na dati ’yung presyo nabibili natin ng P70 (per kilo) ’yung farmgate price, ngayon pinaka-mababa nasa P95 na," So said. "Nagpu-pump ng tubig ’yan, kailangan ng diesel. ’Yung presyo ng tilapia tumaas na din. Itong presyo ng bangus magugulat ka dati nasa P95. Ngayon nasa P140 farmgate na." 

On Friday, the Department of Agriculture said government was preparing to release P500 million worth of fuel subsidies to help farmers and fishermen cope with rising oil prices. The subsidies are expected to be released within the month.