Gucci bag PHLPost tax receipt; Credit: Mhelody Olga Facebook
We all know that paying taxes is important so that our government can provide us the necessary projects. But if you have a relative working abroad, this story will surely get into your nerves. And yes, this will also anger OFWs who plan to send an expensive package to their loved ones back here in the Philippines.
According to Mhelody Olga on her Facebook post last Tuesday, August 18, she went to the Philippine Postal Corporation (PHLPost) main branch in Manila to claim a package from her aunt in London. A lady staff opened the package and she found out the package contains an expensive Gucci bag, but has no price tag on it. She later told Mhelody that the total tax is almost P16,000.
Mhelody said the staff searched the Internet, and she was told that the similar bag has a price of $1,200. Based on the receipt prepared by the staff, the Gucci bag costs P55,355 using the conversion, $1 = P46.129. You will also notice that the tariff rate (Custom Duty) mentioned is 15% of the price of the item. Therefore, it is equivalent to P3,808 for this particular package.
Must Watch: * OFW Package from New Zealand to Davao City Opened and Ransacked at PhlPost (Video)
To add pain for Mhelody, the EVAT (Expanded Value-Added Tax) amount of her package is P7,641. This EVAT is being implement under Republic Act (RA) 9337 in which the Senate bill has been authored by Senator Ralph Recto, who is planning to run for reelection this 2016. Therefore, the Gucci bag has a whopping tax of P15,959, or 28.8% of its price. This includes the P15 Customs documentary stamp.
But here’s the kicker. Mhelody said she asked the lady staff if the Gucci bag will be returned to her aunt if she will not pay the tax to claim the item, she said the lady staff said, “No.” Instead, the lady staff allegedly said that the expensive Gucci bag will go to the government. Mhelody concluded that the bag might go to the PHLPost staff because she admitted she liked it.
Must Watch: * OFW Balikbayan Boxes Discovered Being Sold in the Streets (Video)
Credit: Mhelody Olga Facebook
We must note that earlier this week, the Bureau of Customs (BOC) announced that it will implement stricter rules on balikbayan boxes. According to Customs Commissioner Alberto Lina, the new rules is to avoid traders using these tax-free packages for smuggling goods into the country. The Aquino administration is reportedly in favor of this move by the BOC.
In addition, Migrante party-list chairperson Connie Bragas-Regalado revealed that the BOC is planning to impose additional taxes on consolidated shipments and balikbayan boxes, which is around P325 per balikbayan box. This additional burden is expected to be shouldered by OFWs. Regalado noted that this new tax increase will be implement this coming October.
Given this scenario and the experience of Mhelody, we at TN are requesting the government to study carefully the existing law on taxes as well as upcoming one on balikbayan box. We truly believe that if only corruption is less and taxes are being collected properly, there is no need for additional taxes.
* Congress Approves 10% Soft Drinks Tax Bill, BIR Satisfied
* Boy Can’t Get His Christmas Package from Dad due to High Customs Fees
* World Bank Urges Philippines to Improve Tax System But No Tax Rate Increase
* BOC Employee Who Defended Balikbayan Box Checking Apologizes, But Denies Insulting OFWs