Mon Abrea – a celebrity tax accountant in the Philippines – recently offered his view on future crypto tax legislation in the Asian country.
Mon Abrea Doesn’t See Heavy Crypto Taxation in the Future
Mon Abrea commented that at this time, he doesn’t see new crypto taxation laws coming into effect given that the nation’s leaders don’t seem to understand the industry very well. He commented:
Unfortunately, Congress keeps talking about new taxes when they don’t really understand it.
For the most part, he feels relatively frustrated with the space as crypto doesn’t have a clear definition in the Philippines. This is not even necessarily coming from him but rather Antonette C. Tionko, the finance undersecretary of the country. She recently commented that there is no clear way for her nation to describe or define digital currency.
There is still no BSP regulation or ruling about cryptocurrency, but another unfortunate reality is that our tax rules are very broad and encompassing.
Right now, crypto players in the Philippines are at something of an impasse given that there is no clear way crypto is taxed. While there are certain taxation laws in place, the grounds of their enforcement are blurry, and one does not always understand whether their transaction will require them to pay certain fees to the nation’s tax board.
For many years, this was a problem in even developed nations like the U.S. Crypto taxation laws can be very complicated, and there was a time when presidential hopefuls were even building their campaigns on the idea of clarifying these rules in the future. Men like Andrew Yang and the former mayor of New York City Michael Bloomberg swore up and down that if they made it into the White House in 2020, the crypto taxation laws that seemed to be racking everyone’s brains would be clarified once and for all.
At the time, unfortunately, crypto wasn’t mainstream enough to make anyone really take these candidates seriously, and both figures came up short in the 2020 presidential election. They were forced to suspend their campaigns before things even took off.
Unless there Is a law that exempts income from cryptocurrency, all of us should be ready that once there is a mechanism, and I am saying this, underscoring this, they can just talk about it, but it can never be collected.
All Talk and No Action
He further stated that the nation has long talked about making crypto clear and enforcing strict taxation laws, though he doesn’t see this happening anytime soon given how slow the country has been. He said:
It has been three years. There is still no collection. They keep imposing taxes, but if there is no mechanism or budget to collect it, good luck.
Thus far, in the Philippines, crypto assets can only be taxed when involved in income-producing transactions.