Inflation rate drop welcomed by Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo

December 05, 2018

SPEAKER Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo welcomed yesterday the drop in the inflation rate as the chairperson of the House committee on ways and means called on the country’s economic managers to drop their recommendation for President Rodrigo “Rody” Duterte to implement an additional P2 in fuel excise tax per liter next year.

“Well, I’m very happy to hear about the easing inflation,” Arroyo told reporters in an ambush interview after the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) said the inflation in November slowed down to 6 percent from 6.7% last October.

“I guess the moral of the story is, when there is a supply side inflation, then we increase the supply. But we should do it as soon as we detect the supply side inflation,” said Arroyo.

Nueva Ecija Rep. Estrellita Suansing, the chairperson of the House committee on ways and means, said the implementation of the excise tax on petroleum products next year should be suspended.

“Let the President realize that many people are calling for the suspension of excise tax on fuel,” Suansing told her panel hearing yesterday on calls to suspend the collection of excise tax on fuel in 2019.

“If they will ask me, they have to reconsider [their recommendation] because of [the excise tax’s] big impact. Let’s think the impact of this tax to consumers,” said Suansing.

Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno announced last Tuesday that President Duterte has approved his economic team’s recommendation to push through with the next tranche of fuel excise taxes under the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) law following the “sharp turnaround in world crude prices.”