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BIR Releases Full List of Vat-Exempt Medicines

BIR Releases Full List of Vat-Exempt Medicines

There are a variety of medicines that are exempt from VAT, such as cancer medicines, hypertension medicines, and diabetes medicines. BIR has updated its list of medicines that are exempt from VAT.

According to a revenue memorandum circular issued by BIR, 12 percent of VAT-exempt products are now eligible for VAT exemption.

The updated list has been endorsed by the Department of Health’s Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

A variety of medicines for cancer, diabetes, high cholesterol, hypertension, kidney disease, mental illness, and tuberculosis were included in this circular.

59 drugs have been added to the list, with nearly half being cancer drugs. In addition to medicines for kidney disease, diabetes and hypertension, several kinds of medicine are used for kidney disease.

A total of five drugs were approved by the BIR, two for the treatment of high cholesterol and one for tuberculosis.

Infusion solutions, tablets, injection powders, capsules, granules, oral solutions, and dialysis solutions are all forms of dosage of the medicines.

After the Department of Health recommended that Ixekizumab solution for injection be removed, the BIR removed it from the list.

The drug was approved as an interleukin inhibitor after evaluation of its certificate of registration and package insert for treating moderate to severe plaque psoriasis in adults.

Cancer is no longer considered a treatment for this drug.

The government started exempting prescription drugs for cardiovascular disease and diabetes in January 2019.

Certain medicines will be exempt from VAT in order to make them more affordable for consumers.

Last year, a combined 40% of deaths in the country were caused by heart disease, cancer, and cerebrovascular disease, according to the Philippine Statistics Authority.

Benjamin Diokno, the Finance Secretary, announced earlier this week that the government is reviewing the VAT system in the country and pushing to repeal some exemptions.

In the past, Carlos Dominguez, the former finance chief, advocated for the Marcos administration to limit the scope of VAT exemptions to certain purchases, such as food, medicine, and agriculture.

Getting rid of the exemptions will result in the government gaining P142.5 billion a year.

In his response to Diokno’s proposal, Diokno said the Department of Finance plans to release the list of items that will no longer be VAT-exempt before the end of the year.

It is worth noting that there are some worthwhile exemptions. As soon as we review them, we’ll decide which of them are reasonable,” Diokno said.

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