Magsaysay calls for wage hike in face high prices of goods, VAT, fares

Amid the irrevocable implementation of the 12% VAT on toll on October 1, Zambales 1st Dist. Rep. Mitos Magsaysay called on the Department of Labor and Employment to reassess the feasibility of a wage increase for workers so they could cope with inflation and skyrocketing prices of goods.

According to Magsaysay, even a recent report by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) indicated that wages in the country have been stagnant compared to our Asian neighbors.

“Compounding this issue is the incessant increases in the prices of basic commodities, and expenses such fares and the worst being the high prices of petroleum products which causes a ripple effect on goods and transport, which is exacerbated by the 12 VAT on toll and the impending increase in MRT and LRT fares,” she said.

“The government refuses to give a reprieve to motorists and commuters who will be affected by the 12 percent VAT on toll, citing that this will not have a major impact on their expenses but what is the basis of this statement? Do they know how important P10-P20 is for the ordinary worker or motorist? For the minimum increase in toll, it would result in at least P600 in additional expenses that would be deducted from their income,” she said.

“The Labor sector has long been asking for a reasonable raise in their wages. What they are asking for is really not that unreasonable. The government keeps on citing a growth in our economy but so far, it has not been felt by the regular Filipinos,” she said.

“This is actually not the right time to impose an additional tax on Filipinos who are already reeling from the oil crisis and the recent disaster affecting Northern Luzon, but since the government could no longer be swayed on their decision to slap this new burden, then perhaps, they need to be open to the idea of helping the Filipinos cope with this new expense,” she said.#