PROPOSED amendments to the Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises (CREATE) Act will improve the investment environment, Finance Secretary Benjamin E. Diokno said.
“The proposed amendments to the CREATE Act will enhance the incentive system, clarify the rules and policies on the grant and administration of incentives to qualified enterprises, and address issues affecting the country’s investment climate,” Mr. Diokno said in a statement on Wednesday.
In August, Albay Rep. Jose Ma. Clemente S. Salceda filed the CREATE MORE bill, which seeks to “reconcile disparities between the CREATE Act and its implementing rules, primarily on value-added tax (VAT)-related transactions.”
It is currently with the House Ways and Means committee.
According to a draft substitute bill, CREATE MORE will introduce a “simplified and streamlined” tax refund system for registered business enterprises (RBEs).
It will also allow domestic and export RBEs to continue to enjoy duty exemptions, VAT exemptions and the VAT zero-rating of local purchases as provided in their respective investment promotion agency (IPA) registrations.
National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) Secretary Arsenio M. Balisacan said he also supports the CREATE amendments, which he expects to lead to more investment while enhancing efficiency and productivity and encouraging private-sector activity.
At the 12th Arangkada Forum on Wednesday, Mr. Balisacan said the government is doing its best to address the concerns of the business community with regard to the operation of export processing zones.
“The President wants those concerns addressed and the leadership of both Houses of Congress also take those seriously because we are aggressively promoting our country as a preferred investment destination,” he said.
When asked to elaborate on the concerns, Mr. Balisacan cited issues surrounding the reimbursement and VAT exemption process.
“I think Congress leadership sees it as urgent, and we support these moves so that once and for all, those issues are resolved and our investment community, particularly the foreign ones, will see us in a favorable light,” he added.
The DoF tallies 797 projects involving invested capital of P896.95 billion approved under CREATE.
The Fiscal Incentives Review Board (FIRB) approved 45 “big-ticket” tax incentive applications from RBEs, with invested capital at P721.29 billion.
“The approved investment projects are expected to create 31,421 job opportunities, primarily in capital-intensive industries such as information and telecommunications infrastructure, transportation, manufacturing, and real estate projects,” the DoF said.
Meanwhile, IPAs have approved 752 projects involving invested capital of P175.67 billion as of July. — Luisa Maria Jacinta C. Jocson