By Jefferson Antiporda | The Manila Times
THE government has not realized a single centavo from the P33.9 billion expected additional revenue from the first year of the implementation of sin tax reform law, Sen. Ferdinand Marcos Jr. said on Thursday.
Aside from not producing the projected revenue during the first quarter of the year, the implementation of Republic Act 10351 has also failed to discourage people from smoking because they have shifted to cheaper brands being smuggled into the country.
“All of the things that I’ve said during the debates on the floor about the unrealistic revenue collection and rise in cigarette smuggling are now happening,” Marcos said.
The sin tax reform law was signed by President Benigno Aquino 3rd last December and took effect on January 1.
The revenue target from the new tobacco and liquor tax rates was P33.9 billion during the first year of implementation alone.
The target will be on top of the P75-billion currently being collected by the government, which Marcos and other lawmakers consider unrealistic.
By raising the sin tax rates, the government, by its calculation, expects to collect at least half a trillion pesos from 2013 to 2017 with the bulk of the collection coming from the tobacco industry.
The government will pump the revenues into its universal health care and other programs that directly benefit the public.
It is also aimed at discouraging Filipinos, especially the youth, from smoking.
Marcos said he will “stand up and tell the public exactly what happened” to the sin taxes.