BIR’s ‘substituted filing’ excuse false

To explain why many known Filipino billionaires aren’t in the list of the country’s top 500 taxpayers, both the Bureau of Internal Revenue head Kim Henares and tycoons have invoked the agency’s “substituted filing” system as the reason.

They’re wrong, but they may have inadvertently pointed to what could be a major loophole in the country’s tax collection system.  (more…)

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The richest, the biggest tax evaders?

Many of the very wealthy Filipinos—those with at least a net worth of P5 billion—have managed to pay ridiculously low taxes of less than P4 million.
This is the most logical conclusion if one looks for the names of the Philippines’ 40 wealthiest people listed by Forbes magazine last year in the roster of the country’s 500 biggest taxpayers for 2011 as posted in the Bureau of Internal Revenue’s website.  (more…)

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Silliest electoral system in the world

I’ll bet you’ve never heard of outfits called Kakusa, Buhay, or Alay Buhay. These are groups hastily set up, really fly-by-nighters which however won enough votes in the last elections to designate their congressmen in Congress, yet whose constituencies are really ephemeral.
“Kakusa” refers to “Kapatiran ng mga Nakulong na Walang Sala”, which roughly translates to “Brotherhood of Those Imprisoned without Guilt”. Is our justice system so broken that many of the country’s 75,000 convicts are innocent that they organized a movement powerful enough to get their representative in Congress?  (more…)

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Biazon doesn’t understand arithmetic
















I wrote a piece “Smuggling at its worst under Aquino” November 15, 2012 in the Philippine Daily Inquirer when I was still a columnist there.

The analysis used data from the International Monetary Fund’s Direction of Trade Statistics, and compared the value of imports as reported by the Philippines and the value of exports to it as reported by the exporting countries. Discounted for the exports’ cost of freight and insurance, the difference between the two figures roughly indicates the magnitude of smuggling in a particular country. Many economists have used the technique, even as early as 1965 in an analysis of smuggling in our country at that time. (more…)

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