Taxes: Meralco No.1; STAR in top 500
Prinz Magtulis (The Philippine Star) - January 21, 2016 - 9:00am

MANILA, Philippines - Two firms owned by business tycoon Manuel V. Pangilinan led the top 500 corporate taxpayers for 2014, based on a list released by the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR).

The Manila Electric Co. (Meralco), the country’s largest power distributor, topped the list with P9.686 billion in payments. It dislodged from the top spot Smart Communications Inc., another Pangilinan-led firm, which paid P9.455 billion.

PhilStar Daily Inc., which owns The STAR and is also part of the Pangilinan group, was at 302nd, the only newspaper in the list. It paid P122.86 million in income taxes during the period.

At far third or a notch above its previous spot was Nestlé Philippines with P5.344 billion in income taxes paid, followed by oil firm Shell Philippines Exploration B.V. with P5.280 billion.

Chevron Malampaya LLC, a service contractor for the Malampaya natural gas plant off Palawan, was in fifth place with P5.247 billion.

Diversified conglomerate San Miguel Corp., which ranked third in 2013, dropped to sixth with P4.877 billion.

Completing the top 10 with their corresponding tax payments were Globe Telecom Inc. (P4.739 billion), Unilever Philippines Inc. (P3.146 billion), SM Prime Holdings Inc. (P3.129 billion) and BDO Unibank Inc. (P3.114 billion).

Last month, BIR Commissioner Kim Henares said the release of the top 500 individual and non-individual income taxpayers was in compliance with Republic Act No. 9480 or the Philippine Tax Amnesty Act of 2007.

Under Section 14 of the law, the BIR chief is required to “prepare a list containing the names of all taxpayers, their gross income and amount of income taxes paid” on or before May 31, following the close of each calendar year.

For 2014, the top individual taxpayer was Jacinto Ng, founder of the popular Filipino biscuit brand Rebisco.

He paid P280.11 million in income taxes, edging out from the top spot Sarangani congressman and boxing icon Manny Pacquiao, who paid P210.31 million.

In the corporate list, other companies ranked according to their income tax payments were casino operator Bloombery Resorts and Hotels Inc. at 12th with P2.36 billion; MRT-3 operator Metro Rail Transit Corp. (13th, P2.137 billion), Megaworld Corp. (24th, P1.324 billion), property developers Ayala Land Inc. (33rd, P1.196 billion) and Robinsons Land Corp. (43rd, P965.15 million), Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co. (54th, P820.37 million), broadcast giants ABS-CBN Corp. (79th, P546.15 million) and GMA Network Inc. (104th, P345.75 million) and flag carrier Philippine Airlines Inc. (205th, P186.41 million).

State agencies and government-owned and controlled corporations were also among the top taxpayers. Among them were the Philippine Ports Authority (17th, P1.843 billion), Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. (21st, P1.684 billion), Manila International Airport Authority (36th, P1.099 billion), Philippine Reclamation Authority (39th, P1.005 billion), Land Bank of the Philippines (62nd, P685.92 million) and Philippine Economic Zone Authority (91st, P420.82 million).

At the bottom of the list was Fuji Xerox Philippines Inc., which settled P72.34 million in income taxes.

AYALA LAND INC BILLION BLOOMBERY RESORTS AND HOTELS INC BUREAU OF INTERNAL REVENUE CHEVRON MALAMPAYA COMMISSIONER KIM HENARES DAILY INC INC INCOME MILLION PANGILINAN
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