The government economic team sought the help of the business community in convincing Congress to pass the Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises Act (CREATE) before it adjourns to make the country as a premier investment destination.

Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III made the pitch in a virtual meeting with local and foreign business groups Thursday afternoon that was sponsored by the Financial Executives Institute of the Philippines, Management Association of the Philippines and other business groups.

“I invite all of you to participate in convincing our Congress of the need to urgently pass this bold reform. There is no better time to reform our corporate income tax system, and modernize our fiscal incentives system than now “

Dominguez said.

“This could be the most important economic reform in decades. As statements of our partners in industry and civil society show, the economy can no longer bear any delay in this reform. Now is the best time to do it,”

Dominguez added .

Dominguez said the Create bill is a long-due corporate tax reform measure that will usher in the country’s biggest stimulus program for enterprises and send the strongest signal that the Philippines is “back in the game” amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Dominguez told business leaders this reform package, which provides for an outright 5 percent cut in the corporate income tax (CIT) rate and an improved set of flexible tax and non-tax incentives for investors, entrusts in the private sector the funds and resources needed to fire up the economy and quickly bring back the country to the path of high-and inclusive-growth.

Rather than increase the national budget and pass funds through less efficient government programs, Dominguez said the Duterte administration has decided that the more prudent and effective approach in ensuring the country’s recovery from the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) crisis is by reenergizing the business community through this tax reform.

Dominguez, who heads President Duterte’s economic team, said the large and immediate CIT cut from 30 percent to 25 percent will send “a strong signal to the world that the Philippines is positioning itself as a premier investment destination for companies that are looking to diversify their supply chains” in the wake of the global health emergency triggered by COVID-19. #COVID19PH