STATE-OWNED National Home Mortgage Finance Corp. (NHMFC) told Congress on Thursday that it supports a proposal to exempt from income tax its securitization of low-cost housing mortgages.
“All NHMFC issuances, all transactions and documents involving the sale and transfer/re-transfer of assets, collateral and security interests related thereto (to and from it or its special purpose entity), all other securities related to such securitization transactions, and all secondary trades and subsequent transfers of asset-backed securities… (are requested to be eligible for) all the tax and other exemptions and incentives/benefits under the Securitization Act,” the NHMFC President Renato L. Tobias said in a position paper submitted to the House committee on housing and urban development.
The committee is evaluating House Bill No. 2766, which seeks to establish a single housing development fund.
The measure aims to promote the securitization of mortgages and housing-related receivables of government housing agencies and private entities, as well as encourage more investment — especially from the private sector — in housing finance.
The bill also seeks to allow the use of housing bonds and other instruments issued by the NHMFC as payment for taxes.
Scranton Orcullo of the legal and legislative division of the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) countered however that paying for taxes in cash would help provide the government with immediate funds.
“Accepting taxes in cash is vital for the government (to) readily access funds to cover its expenses and programs,” he told the panel.
The committee is also considering bills seeking to create a National Housing Development, Production and Financing Program, as well as measures seeking to institutionalize the government’s Pambansang Pabahay Para sa Pilipino Program. — Beatriz Marie D. Cruz