House approves on 3rd reading ‘sin tax’ bill
By Karen BoncocanINQUIRER.net
8:43 pm | Wednesday, June 6th, 2012
MANILA, Philippines – The House of
on third and final
reading House Bill 5727, which would raise
taxes of tobacco and alcohol products.
With a vote of 210 in favour of the measure,
21 against, and five abstentions, the House
passed the controversial bill Wednesday, the
last day of its second regular session.
Primarily sponsored by Davao City
Representative Isidro Ungab, the measure eyes
to raise P33 billion in revenues annually, which is
lower than the initial P60 billion to be generated
by imposing a two-tier tax on alcohol products
and a unitary tax on tobacco products.
The lowered target is expected to be reached through a two-tier tax on tobacco products and three-
tier tax on alcohol products.
The two-tier and three-tier tax schemes will categorize tobacco products as low and medium-priced
and alcohol products as low-, medium-, and high-priced respectively.
This means that high-end tobacco and alcohol brands will have higher taxes compared to the low-end
La Union Representative Victor Ortega initially proposed a three-tier tax on tobacco products “to
soften the impact, most especially for the farmers.”
Majority of lawmakers, however, opposed Ortega’s proposal, earning the ire of the La Union
legislator who demanded to see who voted in favour for or against his proposal.
He motioned to divide the House, which was allowed by Majority Leader Neptali Gonzales Jr. who
divided the lawmakers into four rows to better count the votes.
A total of 28 voted for the proposal while 128 who voted against it.
The House will adjourn sine die Thursday, June 7, and will be back in July for its third regular session.