Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Raise the (Tax Exemptions) Roof! Part 2

I'm not anti-labor. However, I believe that House Bill no. 3971 is just a band-aid solution, without addressing the country's real malady. Yes, it has a laudable purpose. But at what expense?

With less tax revenue coming in, where will the government get the money to import Thai rice? How can it buy Meralco? How will it fund a broadband deal? How can it make more overpriced boulevards?

In all seriousness, I think this Bill is compromising the country's fiscal situation. It was only four years ago that the Philippines was on the brink of an Argentina-like financial crisis. That's why the VAT and excise tax were raised. But despite these measures, we still have not achieved a budget surplus. Obviously, we are still not far off from a financial meltdown scenario.

The laborers may be appeased with the passing of this Bill. But again I ask: at what expense?

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