Press Release
October 10, 2018

Transcript of Interview of Senate President Vicente C. Sotto III

On a resolution suspending the implementation of the excise tax on fuel

SP Sotto: Even when Congress is not in session, the Department of Finance, or the president through the Department of Finance, may be able to suspend that. The resolution that has been filed if ever there is a resolution from the Senate is merely an expression of the sense of the Senate. A resolution does not have the force of law unless it is a concurrent joint resolution of both Houses of Congress. That is a different level. A simple resolution is a simple resolution.

Q: Concurrent resolution po yung nakalagay.

SP Sotto: Concurrent resolution ibig sabihin meron ding finile ang House. In my opinion, the Executive Department may suspend that without the necessity of having a bill or a resolution from both Houses of Congress.

Q: Kapag concurrent resolution merong force of law po yun? Kapag napasa in both houses?

SP Sotto: Pwede.

Q: Tapos kailangan din ng pirma ng Pangulo?

SP Sotto: Oo.

Q: Parang ganun yung mangyayari with this resolution po?

SP Sotto: I have to see what type of resolution they filed. If it is a resolution expressing the sense of the Senate, it's as simple as that.

Q: Kung sakaling joint resolution?

SP Sotto: Yun nga ang sinasabi ko. Correct me if I am wrong, but I think it is the Executive Department that can suspend that. It is not a necessity that we pass a bill to suspend it, unless they want to file a bill repealing it. That's a different story.

Q: For the sake of expressing the sense of the Senate, do you think the senators will sign it?

SP Sotto: Depende. Depende on how it is worded, depende on the intentions.

Q: Would you go for it na masuspend yung excise tax?

SP Sotto: I will review; I will probably look into it because I know for a fact that they are contemplating on suspending the incoming raise in excise tax.

Q: Sa January?

SP Sotto: Yun yung sinasabi nila. Masususpend yun, it is possible pero yung current I really don't know.

Q: They are contemplating na dahil nasabi ba ng Pangulo sa inyo?

SP Sotto: Narinig ko lang yung public statement.

Q: Kung yung sa January excise tax ang paguusapan, you will also support that? Kung yun ang kailangan na isuspend?

SP Sotto: Kung kailangan, I will support that. If it will help in answering the problem of inflation worldwide. Kita nyo naman kahit US, Canada, all over the world, meron silang inflation ngayon. If that will help, why not?

Q: Kung kasama yung current year po? P2 sa diesel, gasoline, kung tatanggalin yun, okay din sa inyo?

SP Sotto: Yes, sa akin okay yun, but let the economic managers explain and do it.

Q: But the Senate does not have the power to enforce na magsuspend nung current na tax?

SP Sotto: It has never been done before. It is always the President that does that, or the Department of Finance. Nothing that I remember.

Q: What are the chances na yung pinasang batas isususpend?

SP Sotto: Repeal. A resolution cannot suspend a law that we passed. A law has to repeal a law.

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