PH firms make Time’s world’s best list
Other Relevant Tax Updates:
- TAX & BUSINESS-RELATED NEWS [SEPTEMBER 11-18]
- PEZA DEFERS THE MANDATORY IMPLEMENTATION OF THE EXPANDED ELECTRONIC ZONE TRANSFER SYSTEM (EZTS-PHASE 2) FOR INTERZONE TRANSFER
- COURT OF TAX APPEALS CASES
- TAX & BUSINESS-RELATED NEWS [SEPTEMBER 11-18]
- DOLE to employers: Provide more paid leaves
- SUCs decry P4-B cut in proposed 2024 budget for free college education
- Businesses express concerns as minimum wage hike set to take effect
- House OKS bill to give undergrad professionals chance to earn college degree
- Meralco powers camote ketchup facility in Bohol
- First Gen unit bags 20-MW supply deal with Negros co-op
- Private education system seen collapsing with prohibition bill
- Five ecozones could be proclaimed by October
- 2 more rural banks merge
- 6 PH firms make Time’s world’s best list
- Supplier issue to ground Cebu Pacific planes anew
- Businesses urge Senate to reconsider P150 wage hike
- BPI-Robinsons Bank merger gets clearance from PCC
- ‘Crypto king’ who stole P100 million falls
- Most TESDA graduates earn less than minimum wage
- DOLE: P33 daily minimum wage hike awaits Central Visayas workers
- GSIS sells Sta. Mesa property to SHFC for low-cost condo project
- Supreme Court: TIEZA should have bid out P2.3-million Christmas lights, decor deal
- CA accepts ex-tax appeals justice Uy’s appointment to JBC
- PH Nobel winner Maria Ressa acquitted of tax evasion: court
- NEA lends P847 million to 22 ECs in 8 months
- SEC orders Holcim PH to extend tender offer period by 20 days
- The PH is finally going after plastic producers, but some companies are not cooperating
- 4 Japanese firms investing P10.8-B in PEZA
2. PEZA DEFERS THE MANDATORY IMPLEMENTATION OF THE EXPANDED ELECTRONIC ZONE TRANSFER SYSTEM (EZTS-PHASE 2) FOR INTERZONE TRANSFER
PEZA Memorandum Circular No. 2023-041, issued on August 31, 2023, defers for one (1) month the mandatory implementation of the Expanded Electronic Zone Transfer System (EZTS-PHASE 2) for interzone transfer to properly address the recent issues in the requirement of securing the General Transport Surety Bonds (GTSB). However, for intrazone module, the September 1 mandatory implementation shall proceed as scheduled since the same does not require GTSB.
It may be recalled that under Memorandum Order No. 2023-006, the mandatory implementation of the EZTS-PHASE 2 shall be on September 1, 2023.
3. COURT OF TAX APPEALS CASES
THE CRIME OF SMUGGLING IS CONSUMMATED EVEN IF THE OFFENDER MERELY ASSISTED IN THE FRAUDULENT IMPORTATION OF ANY ARTICLE CONTRARY TO THE LAW
Accused Appellants Emelita Ramirez (Ramirez) and Shiela Larracochea (Larracochea) filed an Appeal from the earlier Decision of the Regional Trial Court (RTC) convicting them of the crime of Unlawful Importation as defined and penalized under the Tariff and Customs Code of the Philippines (TCCP), as amended. The Prosecution argued that it was uncontroverted that the Accused Larracochea, as a Licensed Customs Broker, processed and facilitated the importation of 12,000 bags of red onions from China in conspiracy with ETR Trading under the Accused Ramirez, the registered proprietor thereof as consignee. Accused Ramirez asserted that the Prosecution failed to establish that she took part in processing the subject importation. Accused Larracochea, on the other hand, asserted that it was not established by the Prosecution that she had any connection with ETR Trading other than being its broker for the subject shipment and that the Prosecution failed to prove that she had a hand in the preparation or caused the preparation of the alleged falsified Import Permit. In ruling, the Court held that the Accused Larracochea committed the crime of smuggling. The Court discussed the elements of the second type of smuggling which are all satisfied. Here, the fact of the importation of onion into the Philippines was established. Secondly, the importation was contrary to the law as it lacks the necessary Plant Quarantine Clearance from the Bureau of Plant Industry. Thirdly, the importation was done fraudulently, the use of a falsified Plant Quarantine Clearance is a badge of fraud intended to deceive the Bureau of Customs to release the subject shipment. Lastly, it was undisputed that the Accused Larracochea, as a Licensed Customs Broker, assisted Jocelyn Young, who claims to be a representative of ETR Trading, in the processing and facilitating the importation of the 12,000 bags of red onion from China. However, the Prosecution failed to establish by positive and conclusive evidence that Accused Ramirez acted in conspiracy with Accused Larracochea in the commission of the crime of Unlawful Importation. Consequently, the Appealed Decision was AFFIRMED insofar as it found the Accused Larracochea guilty beyond reasonable doubt of the crime of Unlawful Importation. Accused Ramirez was ACQUITTED on reasonable doubt. [PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES VS. EMELITA RAMIREZ y TAYLO & SHIELA LARRACOCHEA y TACBAS aka SHIELA NERI y LARRACOCHEA aka SHIELA LARRACOCHEA NERI, CTA CRIMINAL CASE NO. A-9, JULY 27, 2023]
[VAT EXEMPT IS DIFFERENT FROM ZERO-RATED] [PASSED-ON VAT ATTRIBUTABLE TO VAT-EXEMPT SALES MAY NOT BE CLAIMED AS INPUT VAT REFUND OR CREDIT] [IN ZERO-RATED VAT, THE ENTITY ENJOYING INCENTIVES UNDER A SPECIAL LAW IS NOT THE SELLER, BUT RATHER, THE BUYER]
Petitioner Melco Resorts Leisure (Php) Corporation filed a Petition for Review assailing the CTA 1st Division’s earlier Decision and Resolution. Petitioner argued that it is entitled to the tax exemption granted under Presidential Decree (PD) No. 1869, otherwise known as the “Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR) Charter” concerning its revenues from gaming operations, as Section 13 extends PAGCOR’s tax exemption to corporations with whom PAGCOR has a contractual relationship. With this exemption, the Petitioner argued that the input Value-Added Tax (VAT) should not have been passed on to the Petitioner by its suppliers on purchases related to the Petitioner’s gaming operations. On the other hand, the Respondent Commissioner of Internal Revenue (CIR) quoted the Court in Division in stating that nowhere in the case records does it show that Petitioner is engaged in the zero-rated sale of goods or services or in transactions other than the business of developing and operating tourist facilities, including a hotel-casino entertainment complex. In ruling, the Court discussed the requisites for a valid claim for a refund or tax credit of input VAT attributable to zero-rated sales under Section 112 of the 1997 Tax Code, as amended. Here, the Petitioner was not able to prove that it is engaged in zero-rated sales. Sales to PAGCOR, and by extension, corporations, associations, agencies, or individuals with whom the Corporation or operator has any contractual relationship in connection with the operations of the casinos such as the Petitioner herein, is subject to zero rate of VAT. However, what is contemplated in this case are sales of services by Petitioner and not to Petitioner. The provision that applies to sales by Petitioner is Section 109(1)(K) of the 1997 Tax Code, as amended. Accordingly, Petitioner’s sale of services is exempt from VAT and not subject to zero rate. Such distinction carries significant differences, most especially in the ability of a taxpayer to claim passed-on VAT as a tax credit or refund. Therefore, Petitioner’s refund or tax credit claim under Section 112 of the 1997 Tax Code, as amended, fails. Consequently, the Petition was DENIED. [MELCO RESORTS LEISURE (PHP) CORPORATION VS. COMMISSIONER OF INTERNAL REVENUE, CTA EN BANC CASE NO. 2608, JULY 11, 2023]
THE PERIOD OF PRESCRIPTION FOR A TAX CASE WHERE THE DATE OF ACTUAL COMMISSION IS UNKNOWN BEGINS TO RUN FROM THE DISCOVERY & INSTITUTION OF PROCEEDINGS FOR ITS INVESTIGATION & SHALL ONLY BE TOLLED BY FILING AN INFORMATION WITH THE COURT
Petitioner Ulysses Palconet Consebido filed a Petition for Certiorari and Prohibition seeking that the assailed Orders of Public Respondent Judge be set aside and reversed. Petitioner argued that following the Lim Case, prescription began on January 30, 2014, i.e., the filing date of the Joint Complaint-Affidavit with the Department of Justice (DOJ) for Preliminary Investigation. Hence, Petitioner asserted that the Information filed on May 20, 2019, exceeds the five-year prescriptive period under Section 281 of the 1997 Tax Code, as amended. Petitioner contended that the Public Respondent judge erred in denying his Motion to Quash Information and insisted that prescription is interrupted only when the case is filed in Court and not by the conduct of the Preliminary Investigation. Public Respondent Commissioner of Internal Revenue (CIR) maintained that the running of the prescriptive period on January 30, 2014, which is the filing of the Joint-Complaint Affidavit with the DOJ, also interrupted the same prescriptive period. In ruling, based on the Lim Case, the proceeding for investigation and punishment of a crime, i.e., preliminary investigation, commences the prescriptive period and is tolled by filing the Information in court. The period between the Preliminary Investigation and the filing of the Information in court must not exceed five (5) years. Here, the Joint Complaint-Affidavit against Petitioner for purposes of Preliminary Investigation was filed on January 20, 2014, and the Information was later filed on May 20, 2019, or only after five (5) years and four (4) months. As such, the right to prosecute had already prescribed. Hence, the Petition was GRANTED, and the assailed Orders were SET ASIDE. [ULYSSES PALCONET CONSEBIDO VS. HON. ANNA LEAH Y. TIONGSON-MENDOZA (PRESIDING JUDGE, REGIONAL TRIAL COURT OF PALAWAN-BRANCH 164) & COMMISSIONER OF INTERNAL REVENUE & THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, CTA CASE NO. 10357, JUNE 30, 2023]
DOLE to employers: Provide more paid leaves [The Philippine Star, September 18, 2023]
In an advisory, Labor Secretary Bienvenido Laguesma said additional paid leave benefits may be provided to employees needing further medical attention on top of the existing leave benefits under company policy, collective bargaining agreement and the Labor Code.
SUCs decry P4-B cut in proposed 2024 budget for free college education [GMA News Online, September 18, 2023]
In a budget deliberation, Dr. Tirso Ronquillo, president of the Philippine Association of SUCs, told the House appropriations panel that they initially proposed P25.85 billion but the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) only approved P21.69 billion.
Businesses express concerns as minimum wage hike set to take effect [Cebu Daily News, September 18, 2023]
The Department of Labor and Employment in Central Visayas (DOLE-7) is set to conduct inspections in small, medium, and large establishments in the region following their decision to increase the daily minimum wage pay by P33.
House OKS bill to give undergrad professionals chance to earn college degree [ABS-CBN News, September 18, 2023]
“The ETEEAP refers to the alternative education program in the Philippines that allows working professionals who were either unable to finish their college education or were completely unable to advance into college for different reasons to earn a bachelor’s degree without going through the traditional schooling method,” House Speaker Ferdinand Martin G. Romualdez said in a statement.
Meralco powers camote ketchup facility in Bohol [Inquirer Mobile, September 18, 2023]
Meralco, through its corporate social responsibility arm One Meralco Foundation (OMF), installed solar panels with a total capacity of 2.2 kilowatts to power the operations of Lundag Eskaya Tribe Multipurpose Cooperative (Letmulco), which processes sweet potato into chips, ketchup and juice.
First Gen unit bags 20-MW supply deal with Negros co-op [Inquirer Mobile, September 18, 2023]
According to First Gen, it won a competitive bidding for the 20-MW baseload power supply requirement of Central Negros Electric Cooperative (Ceneco) through its renewable energy unit, Energy Development Corp. (EDC).
Private education system seen collapsing with prohibition bill [The Philippine Star, September 17, 2023]
The private education system will collapse if students are allowed to take their examinations without paying their tuition fee first, according to private school groups.
Five ecozones could be proclaimed by October [BusinessWorld, September 17, 2023]
The five projects are Megaworld’s ArcoVia City, an IT center in Pasig; MetroCas Industrial Estates-Special Economic Zone in Tanza, Cavite; Suyo Economic Zone in Ilocos Sur, and Parqal and 8912 Asean Avenue, both in Parañaque.
2 more rural banks merge [The Philippine Star, September 17, 2023]
Bayanihan Bank would be the surviving entity, while the Pangasinan-based Rural Bank of Pozorrubio would be the absorbed corporation.
6 PH firms make Time’s world’s best list [The Manila Times, September 16, 2023]
“To create the Time World’s Best Companies list, Statista evaluated companies based on three primary dimensions: employee satisfaction, revenue growth, and sustainability (ESG),” the magazine said.
Supplier issue to ground Cebu Pacific planes anew [The Philippine Star, September 16, 2023]
Budget airline Cebu Pacific is hit with another fleet issue that may impede growth until 2024, as one of its largest suppliers is expected to recall hundreds of jet engines due to a manufacturing flaw.
Businesses urge Senate to reconsider P150 wage hike [Manila Bulletin, September 15, 2023]
Last March, Senate President Juan Miguel Zubiri filed Senate Bill No. 2002, or the Across-the-Board Wage Increase Act of 2023, which aims to increase private sector wages nationwide by P150.
BPI-Robinsons Bank merger gets clearance from PCC [GMA News Online, September 15, 2023]
“Upon careful review of the findings and recommendation of the Mergers and Acquisitions Office (MAO) and the parties’ submissions, the Commission finds that the Transaction will not likely result in substantial lessening of competition for reasons discussed below,” the PCC said in its decision.
‘Crypto king’ who stole P100 million falls [The Philippine Star, September 14, 2023]
Vance Joshua Tamayo, the self-proclaimed “crypto king,” and his companion Gerome Laries were arrested by operatives of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group in front of a casino and entertainment complex along Aseana Avenue in Barangay Tambo at around 4:30 a.m., CIDG director Maj. Gen. Romeo Caramat Jr. said.
Most TESDA graduates earn less than minimum wage [The Philippine Star, September 14, 2023]
While the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) recently boasted an 80% employment rate among graduates, data shows that most earn lower than the average monthly minimum wage — or around P13,420 to P15,860.
DOLE: P33 daily minimum wage hike awaits Central Visayas workers [GMA News Online, September 13, 2023]
The wage order provides an increase of P33 in the daily minimum wage in Region VII, which covers the provinces of Bohol, Cebu, Negros Oriental, and Siquijor.
PH to offer tax-free retail dollar bonds to OFWs: BTr [ABS-CBN News, September 13, 2023]
The RDB will have a tenor of five years.
GSIS sells Sta. Mesa property to SHFC for low-cost condo project [GMA News Online, September 13, 2023]
State workers pension fund Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) on Wednesday said it has sold its property in Sta. Mesa, Manila to give way for the construction of a high-rise condominium under the government’s low-cost housing Pambansang Pabahay Para sa Pilipino Program.
Supreme Court: TIEZA should have bid out P2.3-million Christmas lights, decor deal [ABS-CBN News, September 13, 2023]
A construction and landscaping firm that the Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority awarded a contract to in 2011 was not the only possible source of Christmas decorations, the Supreme Court ruled as it upheld state auditors’ disallowance of the P2.3 million paid for the project.
CA accepts ex-tax appeals justice Uy’s appointment to JBC [Philippine Daily Inquirer, September 13, 2023]
The Commission on Appointments (CA) has authorized the designation of former Court of Tax Appeals (CTA) Associate Justice Erlinda Piñera Uy as a member of the Judicial and Bar Council (JBC).
PH Nobel winner Maria Ressa acquitted of tax evasion: court [Manila Bulletin, September 12, 2023]
Ressa and Rappler had faced five government charges of tax evasion stemming from the 2015 sale of Philippine depositary receipts, which is a way for companies to raise money from foreign investors.
NEA lends P847 million to 22 ECs in 8 months [The Philippine Star, September 12, 2023]
The amount is lower than the P960.85-million worth of loans released by NEA in the same eight-month period last year, which include calamity loans for the rehabilitation of various power distribution systems devastated by previous Typhoons Kiko and Odette.
SEC orders Holcim PH to extend tender offer period by 20 days [Philippine Daily Inquirer, September 12, 2023]
The Securities and Exchange Commission has ordered the Holcim Group to extend the tender offer period for Holcim Philippines by 20 days as small stockholders struggle to meet the requirements caused by the company’s trading suspension.
The PH is finally going after plastic producers, but some companies are not cooperating [Rappler, September 11, 2023]
The Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) Act of 2022 mandates companies with more than P100 million assets to develop a scheme to recover the same amount of plastics they produce or face a fine of at least P5 million.
4 Japanese firms investing P10.8-B in PEZA [Philippine News Agency, September 11, 2023]
The investments came from manufacturers of high-technology products such as TDK Corp., which plans to invest PHP7.2 billion; Taiyo Yuden, PHP1.6 billion; Terumo Corp., PHP1 billion; and Almex Technologies, PHP1 billion.