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NEWS UPDATES Asean Affairs        20  June 2011

Philippines taxes may increase in 2012

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The Aquino administration will consider raising taxes starting next year, a finance official said over the weekend.

The first measure the government would be pushing is the increase in sin taxes.

The official said that the government would start considering introducing new tax measures or raising taxes after 18 months into the Aquino administration’s term have lapsed.

“The promise is no new taxes for 18 months. After that, the government will start considering it,” the finance official said.

The source said the government is optimistic they can convince lawmakers to support an increase in sin taxes as they have already seen that the Aquino administration is serious in its fight to fix the country’s fiscal position by improving tax efficiency.

At present, 90 percent of the cigarette market in the country is controlled by PMFTC, the merged entity of Philip Morris and Lucio Tan-owned Fortune Tobacco Corp.

The government needs to level the playing field so that other companies can enter the market.

According to government estimates, the sin tax measure could raise as much as P19 to P20 billion in the first year of implementation, P30 to P40 billion in the second year, P40 to P50 billion in the third year and P60 to P70 billion in the fourth year.


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This year in Thailand-what next?

AseanAffairs   04 January 2011
By David Swartzentruber      

It is commonplace in journalism to write two types of articles at the transition point between the year that has passed and the New Year. As this writer qualifies as an “old hand” in observing Thailand with a track record dating back 14 years, it is time take a shot at what may unfold in Thailand in 2011.

The first issue that can’t be answered is the health of Thailand’s beloved King Bhumibol, who is now 83 years old. He is the world's longest reigning monarch, but elaborate birthday celebrations in December failed to mask concern over his health. More


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