Duterte signs new taxes on alcohol, e-cigarettes into law

Aika Rey

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Duterte signs new taxes on alcohol, e-cigarettes into law
(UPDATED) Beer will be roughly P35 more expensive once the new tax rates kick in

MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) – President Rodrigo Duterte signed into law a measure that would increase taxes on alcohol and e-cigarettes.

With its enactment, sin taxes on alcohol will be increased by around P35 to P50, and by around P25 to P45 for e-cigarettes this year.

Here are the rates based on based on Republic Act No. 11467

  • Alcohol:
    • Fermented alcohol (beer) – P35
    • Distilled spirits – P42, plus an ad valorem tax of 22%
    • Sparkling and still wine – P50
  • Tobacco:
    • Heated tobacco products (pack of 20s) – P25
    • Salt Nicotine vapor product – P37
    • Free base vapor product (vape) – P45

After 2020, here are the new tax rates for the said products until 2023:

Alcohol (with a 6% indexation rate after 2023)

  • Fermented liquor
    • 2021 – P37
    • 2022 – P39
    • 2023 – P41
  • Distilled spirits (with 22% ad valorem tax)
    • 2021 – P47
    • 2022 – P52
    • 2023 – P59

Tobacco (with a 5% indexation rate after 2023)

  • Heated tobacco products
    • 2021 – P27.50
    • 2022 – P30
    • 2023 – P32.50
  • Salted nicotine vapor products
    • 2021 – P42
    • 2022 – P47
    • 2023 – P52
  • Free base vapor products
    • 2021 – P50
    • 2022 – P55
    • 2023 – P60

Duterte vetoed Section 5 of RA 11467 which required the Bureau of Internal Revenue to search warehouses of alcohol and tocacco products “upon a court order.”

Duterte, in his veto message, said that this phrase “curtails the search and seizure powers” of the BIR.

In a statement on Wednesday, January 22, Senator Pia Cayetano welcomed the signing of the measure. 

“I remain confident that the law’s passage is a good step forward to discourage Filipinos, especially the youth, from taking up dangerous vices, thereby guiding them towards making healthier lifestyle choices,” Cayetano said.

Cayetano had pushed for higher taxes as revenues would go towards the implementation of Universal Health Care, but had to concede during the 4-hour bicameral conference committee meeting in December.

The new sin tax law is expected to bring at least P22 billion in revenues, of which 60% will go the implementation of the UHC law. – Rappler.com

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Aika Rey

Aika Rey is a business reporter for Rappler. She covered the Senate of the Philippines before fully diving into numbers and companies. Got tips? Find her on Twitter at @reyaika or shoot her an email at aika.rey@rappler.com.