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Lawmakers Push Bill to Put Additional Tax on Junk Food to Raise Funds

JUNK FOOD TAX – Lawmakers push bill to impose an additional tax on junk foods to raise funds for easing the economic impact of COVID-19.

As the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic has yet to be eased, the Philippine government is under pressure giving subsidies to distressed Filipinos. Poor families whose livelihoods are greatly affected by the pandemic and only depending on the assistance given by the government.

According to the report of Philstar, Senator Sherwin Gatchalian, vice chairman of the Senate Committee on Economic Affairs, is now looking at the possibility that the government will impose junk food tax, adding that this kind of food has zero nutritional value.

Tax on Junk Food
Image Source: Philstar

Gatchalian pointed out that junk food has been proven to cause obesity and other heart ailments. Senators emphasized that raising funds through new taxes should be carefully calibrated. Funds raised are expected to be used in the implementation of Universal Health Care Law.

READ ALSO: BIR Plans To Tax Online Services Including Media Streamers & Online Sellers

In February the Department of Finance reported that excise tax collections from tobacco, alcohol, and sweetened beverages reached a total of P269.1-billion by 2019. The DOF estimates the government will be able to raise P332.3-billion from sin taxes this year, as it covers e-cigarettes and the scheduled increase in excise taxes imposed on alcohol and tobacco.

Tax on Junk Food
Image Source: Philstar

Meanwhile, Senate President Pro Tempore Ralph Recto said that raising taxes in general “is not a good idea” at this time. But admitted that it can be imposed next month.

READ ALSO: Online Sellers, Freelancers are Now Required to Pay Tax- BIR

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