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Even if Congress grants ABS-CBN with a new franchise, Pres. Rodrigo Duterte threatens to block NTC to give the Lopez-owned company the permit to operate unless the Network settles its ‘unpaid’ taxes

Despite ABS-CBN’s compliance in paying its taxes, the President still insists on his ‘no taxes, no franchise’ stance

“Unless and until mabayaran ng mga Lopez ang mga taxes nila, I will ignore your franchise and I will not give them the license to operate, before talking about the DBP loans,” President Rodrigo Duterte said.

On February 24, 2020, however, representatives from the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) and the Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) confirmed that the Network did not violate any regulations.

The Unit Head of the BIR’s Large Taxpayers Service, Simplicio Cabantac Jr., stated that the Network regularly files and pays their taxes yearly. Cabantac Jr. mentioned it during the Senate Committee Hearing on February 24 last year.

“They are regularly filing and paying their taxes for the past number of years,” Simplicio said.

The BIR disclosed that the broadcasting station paid from 2016 to 2019 and amounted to P14.398 billion.

Moreover, in 2019, ABS-CBN settled their balance with the BIR and paid P152.44 million for assessed deficiencies in their income tax, value-added tax, and documentary stamp tax payments.
Meanwhile, SEC Commissioner Ephyro Luis Amatong has stated that ABS-CBN no violations to the agency.

Their alleged unpaid loan to the state bank, Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP), the latter cleared it.

During the hearing on Monday, January 18, 2021, DBP president Emmanuel Herbosa said there was nothing irregular in the bank’s disposal of the non-performing loans (NPLs) and non-performing assets (NPAs) by the companies belonging to the Lopez Group then.

“These NPLs and NPAs were dealt with in the regular course of business and disposed of by DBP pursuant to Republic Act No. 9182, entitled The Special Purpose Vehicles Act of 2002, as amended by RA No. 9343 and other applicable laws, which authorized financial institutions, like DBP to transfer NPLs and NPAs to SPVs (special purpose vehicles) created under the Act,” Herbosa said.

Furthermore, during the Congress’ hearing, there’s no-solid violation found against ABS-CBN. Hence, the Network complied with the government throughout its shutdown.

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