Lawmakers seek tax exemption of the CDIA

TWO House leaders are seeking the tax exemption of the Cities Development Initiative for Asia (CDIA), a non-profit and established Asia-wide regional technical assistance partnership facility.

Reps. Jerry Treñas (Lone District, Iloilo City) and George Arnaiz (2nd District, Negros Oriental) pointed out the non-profit nature of CDIA and its laudable goals make it prudent to exempt CDIA from taxation in
the Philippines.

Treñas, Chairman of the House Committee on Good Government and Public Accountability, said the CDIA provides assistance to medium-sized Asian cities to bridge the gap between their development plans and the
implementation of their infrastructure investments.

“CDIA uses a demand-driven approach to support the identification and development of urban investment projects in the framework of existing city development plans, emphasizing environmental sustainability, pro-poor development, climate change, and good governance,” Treñas said.

Arnaiz, Chairman of the Committee on Local Government, explained that the CDIA is an established Asia-wide regional technical assistance partnership facility supported by the Asian Development Bank, the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA), and the respective governments of Germany, Austria, Singapore and Spain.

“It is the intent of CDIA to solicit sustainable support from the countries of the Asian region. In view of the laudable goals of CDIA, the Philippines agreed to host the CDIA headquarters in Manila and to be a member of its Governing Council,” Arnaiz said.

In House Bill 3816, the lawmakers proposed to exempt the CDIA or its successors from the payment of gift, franchise, specific, percentage, real property, exchange, import, export, and other taxes provided
under existing laws and ordinances. The exemption shall extend to goods imported and owned by CDIA to be leased or used by members of its staff.

The measure also proposes that all gifts, bequests, donations and contributions which may be received by CDIA from any source whatsoever, or which may be granted by CDIA to any individual or non-profit organization for educational or scientific purpose shall be exempt from payment of taxes imposed under Title III of the National
Internal Revenue Code. Likewise, all gifts, contributions, and donations to the CDIA shall be considered allowable deductions for purposes of determining the income tax of the donor based on the bill.

Lastly, non-Filipino citizens on the technical staff and scientific staff of the CDIA shall be exempt from payment of income tax on salaries and stipends in dollars received solely and by reason of service rendered to the CDIA according to the bill.

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