Filipino Co-ops Face Tax Fight

This report, dated December 13th, 2004, was written by Maila Ager for, a news and information website partially owned by the Phillipine Daily Inquirer.

A bill going through the country's House of Representatives would remove exemptions certain co-operatives receive from the national "value-added tax" (or VAT). Co-ops dealing with generating electricity, agriculture, housing, credit, teaching and others would be forced to charge their members and customers more if the exemptions were lifted. The co-ops are non-profit, and would be hurt if the government removed them.

Why would the Filipino government do such a thing to them? They are providing services to the poor, especially in the rural areas. Can't revenue be raised in other manners that will not hurt the co-ops' daily workings? Surely there must be a better way. Let's hope this bill will be defeated, and something better put in it's place.


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