MOA signed on Philex taxes

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Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Maria Elena Catajan

LA TRINIDAD, Benguet -- The deal between Philex and highland towns is sealed.

In simple rites the Memorandum of Agreement was signed Tuesday morning in Itogon headed by Mayor Victorio Palangdan, Tuba Mayor Florencio Bentrez, and Philex officials.


"We are very happy that we can now feel the rewards of the use of our natural resources," Palangdan said.

The MOA indicates both Itogon and Tuba will receive P100 million each as their share of tax payments from the mining firm.

The MOA dictates there will be an initial P50 million given 10 days after the signing to both towns the remaining P50 million will be given as projects to be implemented in the next year.

The tax payment of Philex is a landmark case with the issue going on for years, making collection a problem for both municipalities.

The mining firm has held off payments to the highland towns because of jurisdictional issues considering there exists a boundary dispute between the two municipalities.

In the past, the company has urged both towns to settle their boundary disputes for a tax settlement to ensue as the company can only start to compute the taxes due to both municipalities when a definite host community is determined by courts.

However, amicable talks between officials yielded the out of court settlement and decision to divide the tax share between both towns equally, putting to a close the drawn out issue of tax payments.

In a bid to settle the boundary dispute both towns has agreed proceeds to be derived from the business taxes of Philex will be divided equally by and among them as well as fix the payments to be made by the mining firm in the coming years.

The money will be used by Itogon to rehabilitate the Loakan Road as well as to jumpstart livelihood projects for the town in a bid to increase the per capita income of the municipality.

Published in the Sun.Star Baguio newspaper on May 07, 2014.

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