A LAWMAKER reiterated on Tuesday the need to suspend the oil excise tax amid increasing fuel prices.
Camarines Sur Rep. Luis Raymund “LRay” F. Villafuerte called to prioritize the passage of House Bill No. 5176, which seeks to suspend excise tax on “regular gasoline, unleaded premium gasoline, and diesel fuel oil when the average Dubai crude oil price based on the Mean of Platts Singapore (MOPS) for three months prior to the scheduled increase for the month reaches or exceeds $80 per barrel.”
The proposed measure was included as a temporary provision under Republic Act No. 10963 or the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) Law passed in 2017, but was suspended in 2020.
Mr. Villafuerte said the bill aims to amend Section 148 of the National Internal Revenue Code.
“Geopolitical conflicts and other developments in world markets have been driving up the cost of petroleum products,” he said.
It has “jacked up transportation expenses and food prices responsible for the seemingly unending elevated inflation that now threatens to slow the global economy and possibly even lead to recession in most parts of the world,” he added.
Data from the Energy department show that in January, gasoline price increased by P2.80 per liter (/L), diesel increased by P2.25/L, and kerosene prices went up by P2.40/L.
Mr. Villafuerte called the proposed measure “a surefire way to cushion the economic impact on ordinary Filipino consumers of the rollercoaster ride in the pump prices of diesel and gasoline.”
The MOPS is the daily average price of a Singapore-based oil product assessment published by Platts, a division of S&P Global. It is used to price petroleum products in Southeast Asia. — Beatriz Marie D. Cruz