Nov. 29, 2017: DENR to let small miners thrive, but in legal manner | BusinessMirror

Nov. 29, 2017: DENR to let small miners thrive, but in legal manner | BusinessMirror
 

The Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB) is looking at establishing more Minahang Bayan under the Duterte administration to better regulate small-scale mining and increase government revenue from the extraction of mineral resources.

“Personally—and we in the MGB— support the legalization of illegal small-scale mining,” Director Wilfredo G. Moncano said in a recent interview on the sidelines of the 64th Annual National Mine Safety and Environment Conference (ANMSEC) held in Baguio City from November 23 to 25.

According to Moncano, less than 20 percent of small-scale mining cooperatives are operating legally, with less than 20 Minahang Bayan approved for operation in
the Philippines.

Nov. 29, 2017: Villanueva amendments to TRAIN bill raise coal tax from P10 to P300 per mt; double mining resource tax

Nov. 29, 2017: Villanueva amendments to TRAIN bill raise coal tax from P10 to P300 per mt; double mining resource tax
 

MANILA – Senator Joel Villanueva on Monday night introduced amendments to the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) Bill proposing to increase taxes on coal and mining.

With 11 affirmative votes, one negative and one abstention, the Senate approved the amendment raising the coal tax from P10 per metric ton to P300 per metric ton.

The Senate also approved to increase the excise taxes on metallic and non-metallic mining resources from 2% to 4%.

Nov. 29, 2017: Proposed mining tax hike ‘really heavy,’ says Global Ferronickel

Nov. 29, 2017: Proposed mining tax hike ‘really heavy,’ says Global Ferronickel
 

MANILA – The potential doubling of mining taxes will be a “really heavy” burden and some players “might not survive” if commodity prices are down, a mining company head said Tuesday.

The Senate on Monday doubled excise tax rates on mining as part of a broader tax reform package that it hoped to pass this week.

Nov. 29, 2017: Mining stocks fall as Senate approves nearly 3,000% coal tax hike

Nov. 29, 2017: Mining stocks fall as Senate approves nearly 3,000% coal tax hike
 

MANILA, Philippines – Mining stocks took a dive after the Senate approved a nearly 3,000% increase in coal taxes as part of the Duterte administration’s comprehensive tax reform package.

The mining and oil index was the worst performer of all Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE) indices on Tuesday, November 28, falling by 615.65 points or 5.07% to end at 11,526.59 as trading closed.

All of the PSE indices, save for financials, were down on Tuesday, which caused the main PSE index (PSEi) to fall by 69.81 points or 0.84% to close at 8,291.88.

Nov. 28, 2017: Tempers flare as senators double mining taxes without hearings

Nov. 28, 2017: Tempers flare as senators double mining taxes without hearings
 

MANILA, Philippines – In an unusual move, the Senate overwhelmingly voted Monday, November 27, to double mining taxes even though there were no committee hearings conducted earlier to discuss the issue.

It was Senate President Pro-Tempore Ralph Recto who first introduced the proposal but later withdrew it. Senator Francis Escudero, however, revived it, saying it was high time to increase taxes of mining companies for “raping” the country.

This did not sit well with Senate ways and means committee chair Juan Edgardo Angara and Senate environment and natural resources chair Senator Cynthia Villar, who both said it was unfair for the industry to be taxed without hearing their side.

Nov. 29, 2017: Meet this 11-year-old advocate against Manicani mining

Nov. 29, 2017: Meet this 11-year-old advocate against Manicani mining
 

MANILA, Philippines – While other kids of his age are hooked on computer games or school work, 11-year-old Fidelino Atregenio Jr. instead chooses to join his father in rallying against giant mining companies, which he described as “walang kaawa-awa” or merciless.

At his age, he could be the youngest anti-mining advocate in the Philippines. (READ: Fast Facts: Mining in the Philippines)

His parents used to live in Manicani, a small island in Eastern Samar, but later decided to stay in Manila for good.

His father began tagging him along in anti-mining rallies in the city as early as when he was only two years old. Even if he did not grow up in the island, young Fidelino personally visits the area with his family almost every year.

Nov. 28, 2017: 10 senators OK Escudero proposal to double tax rates on mining firms

Nov. 28, 2017: 10 senators OK Escudero proposal to double tax rates on mining firms
 
After a heated debate, majority of senators voted on Monday night to double the tax rates on mining firms.

Ten senators voted in favor of Senator Francis Escudero’s proposal to double  the tax, two  were against it while three abstained from voting.

It was Senate President Ralph Recto, who initially made the proposal after  learning during plenary debates on the  proposed tax reform measure that  the  total revenues  being collected from the mining industry amounted to P1.8 billion only.

Nov. 28, 2017: Miners push competitive output-based tax regime | BusinessMirror

Nov. 28, 2017: Miners push competitive output-based tax regime | BusinessMirror
 

The Chamber of Mines of the Philippines (COMP) said it welcomes the plan of the Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB) to base the planned increase in mining tax on mineral output, instead of imposing a uniform levy.

But it should be benchmarked globally, or the Philippines will just lose mining investments to countries with a more competitive tax regime.

Ronald Recidoro, executive director of COMP, told the BusinessMirror in an interview that COMP’s proposal during the Aquino administration was, in fact, a commodity-based approach to mining taxation, which he described as more accurate and more correct.

“It’s more accurate if we treat gold and copper differently from iron ore, nickel and chromite, because they have different economics.  That’s the direction to take
if we are to renew the fiscal regime for mining; a different treatment for a different commodity,” Recidoro said.

Nov. 28, 2017: Villanueva introduces amendments to tax reform bill; pushes for higher taxes on coal, mining

Nov. 28, 2017: Villanueva introduces amendments to tax reform bill; pushes for higher taxes on coal, mining
 
Senator Joel Villanueva on Monday night introduced amendments to the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) Bill proposing to increase taxes on coal and mining.
With 11 affirmative votes, one negative and one abstention, the Senate approved the amendment raising the coal tax from P10 per metric ton to P300 per metric ton.
“The coal tax has remained unchanged for decades since 1988. Four years before that, our excise tax was set at P50.00 per metric ton under Executive Order No. 1933. In 2017 value, that P50.00 excise tax is equivalent to about P600.00 per metric ton.  However, we are instead collecting a P10.00 tax per metric ton in the present – the same rate we have been imposing almost 30 years ago.” said Villanueva, vice chairman of the Senate committee on ways and means.
Villanueva stressed that the government is currently not only imposing a tax rate pegged at 1988 level, but also exempting the local industry from paying the excise tax since 1976.
“In the 1970’s, the coal mining industry could be deemed as an emerging industry in need of government support.  In our desire to expand the industry, we needed to attract private sector participation in the coal mining industry. With this idea in mind, our government gave away generous incentives to private contractors to make sure that coal mining venture will be lucrative.  This was exactly the intention of Presidential Decree 972 or the Coal Development Act of 1976,” Villanueva said.