Japan envoy urges Philippines to reconsider tax credit cuts

23, Oct. 2018

MANILA, NNA – Japan's ambassador Koji Haneda has asked the Philippine government to reconsider tax reform proposals that would scale back certain business tax incentives. He said the move could hinder Japanese companies operating here.

In a speech at the 44th Philippine Business Conference and Expo on Friday, Haneda said Japan has helped create many jobs in the Philippines and has been one of the main sources of foreign direct investment because of the tax credits.

He cited a survey by the Japanese Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Philippines indicating the tax advantage was a key factor in the growth in investment from Japan.

More than 1,500 Japanese firms are currently operating in the country, of which, over 900 companies are registered with the Philippine Economic Zone Authority.

The government’s Comprehensive Tax Reform Program Package 2, known as the Trabaho Bill, proposes replacing the 5 percent perpetual gross income earned incentives for the authority registered companies with a five-year special corporate income tax rate of 15 percent.

“I hope (the companies’) views are appropriately considered in the discussion of the bill,” said Haneda.

He said Japan would “ensure both quality and timely delivery” of its commitments, and stands firm in its intent to support the “Build Build Build” program of the Rodrigo Duterte Administration.