27.9 C
Monday, July 15, 2024

Salceda cites financing need of agri sector

- Advertisement -

Albay Rep. Joey Salceda, House ways and means committee chairperson, is batting for the inclusion of the agricultural sector under Republic Act 11534 or the Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises (CREATE) Act with more financing coming with agri-agra amendments.

He welcomed the lower inflation rate recorded in January at three percent showing that the Philippines is “well on the road to economic recovery.”

He, however, warned that “we need to sustain momentum, especially on the supply side by investing in basic sectors such as agriculture.”

“I am especially pleased by the food price deflation in NCR. Food and beverages actually got cheaper by three percent in the region, which of course means well for metro workers and working families, who can buy more food,” he said.

“In fact, even when we had weather disturbances last month, we still saw good price stability. I attribute this to normalizing supply chains, especially as Omicron, even if infectious, was not as disruptive or lethal as the other variants,” he added.

Prices outside of Metro Manila “still need vigilance,” he stressed.

“Prices outside the National Capital Region have settled between 3 to 4 percent which is not yet to a level I would feel completely at ease about.

We need a little more breathing room in those areas, especially if we want to keep inflation rate low for the rest of the year,” the Albay lawmaker said.

Agri investments need to be promoted under the CREATE law, he stressed.

According to Salceda, to be able to achieve stable food prices for the rest of the year, he is working with Agriculture Secretary William Dar to ensure that investments in agriculture sectors would be eligible for investment incentives.

“Food prices drive overall prices. Agriculture output drives food prices. So if we want to keep overall prices in control, we need to invest heavily in agriculture. That means both public and private investments,” he said.

Lawmakers in response to the COVID-19 pandemic passed the CREATE law as a fiscal relief to domestic and foreign corporations doing business in the Philippines.

“Ultimately, agriculture in the Philippines is a public-private partnership,” Salceda said.

“That’s why I am working with Secretary Dar to come up with a list of agriculture sectors that will be eligible for tax incentives under the CREATE Law. We will discuss the list in a committee hearing on Monday,” he noted.

Once included under CREATE, export-oriented agricultural enterprises would be entitled to up to 17 years of incentives with four to seven years of income tax holiday and 10 years of special corporate income tax, he said.


Popular Articles