Thursday, November 26, 2015
Undersecretary Gil Beltran, of the Department of Finance, has called on the administrators of the Cooperative Development Authority (CDA) "to engage in a higher level of professionalism, leading in the development of responsible citizenship, including the duty of citizens to pay the right taxes."
Usec. Beltran, made the challenge in his keynote speech during the culmination rites of the year-long Cooperative Centennial Celebration, marking the 100 years of cooperativism in the Philippines, in ceremonies held last October 23, 2015 at the Philippine Trade and Training Center, Pasay City.
"..I end with a challenge. Dear, CDA, we want to see 3Ps: Professionalism, Principle, and Proactiveness," he summed up in his speech.
Firstly, he exhorted that "..CDA must ensure that each and every cooperative is built on the foundation of the CDA law, and not digress from its true spirit.."
There must be a balance between CDA's role in developing cooperatives and ensuring that these do not become a tax avoidance mechanism, to the detriment of sustainable development, he implored.
"..Secondly, we need to live by way of principle, given that the spirit of the creation of the CDA is to make sure that every person in this nation is embedded in our socio-economic fabric through financial inclusion," Usec. Beltral intoned.
"..Finally, even though we have made some progress over the years, it has only set us on the right path and now we have to be proactive by aiming to increase membership and the employment we generate by two-fold each year...
"...To take this further, CDA must do better in data and knowledge management, leveraging it to perform its regulatory functions best and ensuring the overall performance of every cooperative greatly contributes to economic growth..," according to Beltran.
CALL FOR GOOD
Earlier in his speech, Usec. Beltran urged CDA urged that there must be good governance in the cooperative sector, especially how the true spirit of the cooperative law should emanate from CDA and through every cooperative under its umbrella. (END).
Monday, November 23, 2015
REP. CRESENTE "MR. CO-OP" PAEZ, hailed the recent enactment of R.A. 10693, the Microfinance NGOs Act, even as he expressed appreciation to Pres. Benigno Aquino III for signing the pro-poor legislation, into law.
POOR TO BE GIVEN ACCESS
TO FINANCIAL SERVICES
"This is a welcome development because the poor will be given access to financial services such as credit, savings and insurance that are reasonably-priced, by way of proper regulation of microfinance NGOs," Paez, who was one of the co-authors of the Microfinance NGOs Bill in the House of Representatives, said in a press statement.
Paez, adopted by the Liberal Party as Senatorial Candidate, from the cooperative sector, pointed out that poor Filipinos, who are considered as unbankable, are deprived of financial services from commercial banks, so they face financial exclusion.
FOSTERS ENTERPRISE DEVELOPMENT,
The new law, which recognizes the important role of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) engaged in microfinance operations for the poor, is fostering local enterprise development and social entrepreneurship.
"The law will strengthen microfinance NGOs to pave the way for the poor to make their livelihood sustainable through the provision of microenterprise services. We are helping here the micro and small enterprises so they would be given opportunities to contribute to inclusive growth," Paez explained.
BRAVO: IN TIME FOR
Rep. Anthony Bravo (Coop-Natcco PL), co-author of the House Bill on Microfinance NGOs Act, also hailed the passage of R.A. 10693.
"It is very timely because micro, small and medium enterprises need technical and financial services at this time of ASEAN integration, so they won't be left out. The poor and low-income individuals like the farmers, will be saved from borrowing from loan sharks that charge exorbitant interest rates," Bravo said.
ONLY 2% TAX ON GROSS RECEIPTS
FROM MICROFINANCE OPERATIONS
Bravo also underscored that duly-accredited microfinance NGOs are given preferential tax treatment under the new law, where they will pay only 2% based on the gross receipts from microfinance operations, in lieu of all national taxes.
Paez and Bravo are also pushing for the passage of the Poverty Reduction Through Social Entrepreneurship (PRESENT) Bill, another poverty alleviation measure.
They both authored HB 1331, the Promotion of Social Enterprises to Alleviate Poverty, Establishing for the Purpose the Poverty Reduction Through Social Entrepreneurship (PRESENT) Program, that is pending in the Lower House. (END).
Sunday, November 22, 2015
"...Nagtipon-tipon tayo ngayong araw na ito. Ipapakita natin sa bansa na malakas pala ang kooperatiba natin.
Alam n'yo ho, mayroong nangyari nitong last two weeks. Mayroong probisyon doon sa Fiscal Incentives Rationalization Bill..na i-repeal yung co-op tax exemption.
Pero itong inyong representation (Rep. Cresente Paez), ako iyong nagsusulong na tanggalin iyon sa probisyon. Naniwala naman sila; at sa ngayon, tanggal na ito (provision to repeal tax exemption) dito sa Lower House (House of Representatives).
Pero sa (bill sa) Senate, nandiyan pa. Kasi ang author doon (ng repeal), si Sen. Loren Legarda. Pero (sa) tingin ko marami ring mga senador ang sumusuporta sa atin. Importante ito sa ating cooperative sector. Kasi malaki ang mababawas sa kanilang (kooperatiba) kita. At saka hindi ito (taxes that may be collected) maibabalik sa mga kasapi ng kooperatiba.
(Sa budget ng CDA), ..ang aming proposal, makaabot ng P3-billion, pero ang nasa endorsement (ng Dept. of Finance), hanggang P349-million lang. So, humihirit ako, tapos kinukumbinse ko iyong (House) Committee on Appropriations, na dagdagan (ang CDA budget) ng P140-million.
So, sa period of amendments (ng GAA Bill), ipapasok ang (dagdag na) P140-million. At saka okey naman ang Committee on Appropriations. Dagdag itong pangsuporta, lalo na sa mga kooperatibang maliliit; na mabigyan sila ng training na importante sa governance ng mga kooperatiba.
Ang kwenta ko, baka more than 50% ang magsasara (kung aalisin ang tax exemption) kasi marami ang maliliit (na kooperatiba). Hindi naman masyado matatamaan ang mga malalaki. Pero malaking bawas sa kita ng mga kooperatiba. So, apektado ang strength ng institution. Apektado yun.
It would take so long na makabangon sila. So, isinusulong natin talaga, na huwag talaga i-repeal ang co-op tax exemption. Kasi hindi naman masama sa gobyerno na magbigay ng tax exemption sa mga maliliit na tao.
It is alwas the responsibility of the government to take care of the ordinary people after all. Ang ating mga legislators nagsusuporta naman sila. Kasi, bawa't distrito naman, mayroong mga kooperatiba.
Ang ating mga economic managers, medyo iba ang kanilang perspektibo. Ang tingin nila, ang mga (buwis sa) kooperatiba makadadagdag sa kita ng gobyerno. So, doon nakatutok, especially yung Department of Finance, at yung BIR.
Kasi, gusto nila, lalaki ang kita ng gobyerno. Pero hindi nila nakikita na ang kooperatiba, in fact, nagge-generate ng mga taxpayers. Kasi, kung ang mga kasapi nakautang sa kooperatiba, magtatayo sila ng negosyo. So, ang ibig sabihin niyan, may job generation. At the same time, nakakabayad sila (mga kasapi) ng buwis, because of VAT. Kasi may VAT naman yun. Hindi nila ito nakikita.
So, kailangan na i-educate natin sila. Ang akin lang masasabi rito, panahon na ngayon, na mayroon tayong representation sa Senado. At saka itong kaibigan ninyo (Rep. Cresente Paez), kasama sa Liberal Party. Naniniwala ang ating administrasyon -yung ruling party - na malaki ang maitutulong ng ating cooperative sector sa ekonomiya ng bansa.
Ang mahalaga dito, kasali tayo sa Daang Matuwid.."
(Excerpts from the interview of REP. CRESENTE "MR. CO-OP" PAEZ, Liberal Party Senatorial Candidate, during the October 24, 2015 Co-op Unity Walk, CCP Grounds, Pasay City). (END).
Posted by admin at 3:50 AM
Tuesday, November 17, 2015
This was the first time that I encountered such a formal reaction from the cooperatives on the subject. That is, to request for deferment of their compliance with the the Credit Information System Act of 2008 (CISA).
Under CISA, cooperatives shall submit to the Credit Information Corporation (CIC) the credit data of cooperatives' member-borrowers and send monthly updates thereof.
As "submitting entities" under CISA, medium cooperatives are required to start their compliance starting December 31, 2016. Medium cooperatives, per definition of the Cooperative Development Authority (CDA), are those with at least P50-million assets.
On the other hand, large cooperatives, or those with P100-million assets and over, are mandated to comply starting October 30, 2016. These deadlines are set forth under CIC Circular No. 2015-02, series of 2015. View the circular at creditinfo.gov.ph/sites/default/files/CircularNo.2.ph
According to the report, "..the Regional Cooperative Development Council in Region 7 (RCDC7, the Provincial Cooperative Development Council of Negros Oriental, and the City Cooperative Development Council of Dumaguete City jointly passed the three (3) resolutions...".
And these "..were unanimously approved by more than 600 delegates representing co-op unions, federations and primaries of Cebu, Negros Oriental, Bohol, and Siquijor provinces...".
The other resolutions 1. call for strong objection to the repeal of Art. 60 & 61 of R.A. 9520, as contemplated by House Bill No. 2765, and by Senate Bill No. 2048; and 2. seek to lobby for the national government to increase the budget appropriations of the Cooperative Development Authority from P349-million in CY 2015, to P1-billion in 2016.
The report mentioned above may be viewed at r7.cda.gov.ph/index.ph/resources/updates/news/152-2nd-cvcc-adopts-3-resolutions
Monday, November 16, 2015
"The government, particularly the BIR (Bureau of Internal Revenue), is making it difficult for cooperatives to avail themselves of tax exemptions, by strewing, discouraging, and suffocating administrative procedures and requirements."
Thus, said Sen. Ferdinand R. "Bongbong" Marcos, Jr., in his keynote speech during the 5th Philippine Cooperative TEAMshop held last Nov. 13, 2015 at Boracay, Aklan.
He cited the State policy on cooperatives: "..In essence, the will of the sovereign Filipino people is that we should 'foster the creation and growth of cooperatives as a practical vehicle for promoting self-reliance and harnessing people power towards the attainment of economic development and social justice..'
"However, it is clear that the government itself is getting in the way, as evidenced by the policy and acts of certain agencies of government that seem to ultimately defeat and frustrate this clear sovereign will," Sen. Marcos said.
He also reported that of some 25,000 cooperatives registered with the Cooperative Development Authority (CDA), only about 11,600 were issued Certificates of Good Standing.
On the other hand, only 6,295 of these cooperatives had been issued Certificates of Tax Exemption by BIR.
Sen. Marcos, who is vice chairman of the Senate Committee on Cooperatives Development, added that the reported "underdevelopment" of the cooperative sector is not due to the nature of cooperatives, per se.
This is due to our own regulatory system that, he pointed out, tends to undermine and discourage the formation and operation of cooperatives, as business organizations..".
"This should also be a challenge to the leaders and managers of cooperatives, who should be at the forefront and should not relent on the struggle to demand logical and commonsensical implementation by government of our incentive scheme and to attain tax-exempt status of our cooperatives in the whole country," Sen. Marcos added. (END).