DTI preparing guidelines on use of TRF

The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) is now finalizing the guidelines on the availment of domestic industries of the newly created Trade Remedy Fund (TRF).

“We’re finalizing the guidelines but it’s up to the Department of Budget and Management to set the deadline, “Bureau of Import Services Director Luis M. Catibayan said in a text message. “Based on our monitoring of trade remedy duty collections, the first half of 2015 reflected around P10 million. We need to check with Treasury whether the duties collected were deposited in the fund code created for the purpose.”

According to the Safeguard Measures Act (Republic Act  8800), the  Department of Agriculture, the DTI and Tariff Commission are empowered to collect fees, charges and safeguard duties on imports of commodities deemed by the government as injurious to the competitiveness of their local counterparts. RA 8800 dictates that the collected amount be deposited to the TRF.

According to the law, 50 percent of the revenue collected from such fees, charges and safeguard duties shall be set aside in a Remedies Fund, which shall be earmarked for the use of the government agencies in implementing the trade remedies.

The remaining half shall be deposited under a special account to be created in the National Treasury and should be given to the private sector to increase their competitiveness. Collected antidumping duties will also be directed to this fund, as provided for in the Anti-Dumping Act of 1999. The fund code under the National Treasury was only created in June 2014.

The Steel Angles, Shapes and Sections Manufacturers Association of the Philippines Inc. earlier raised the issue on the use of the TRF.

Catibayan said the duties collected before the creation of the TRF have already gone to the General Fund, and, as such, can no longer be availed of by the industry.




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