US President Donald Trump is not a taxpayer in the Philippines, but private companies “with his name” could have had paid levies to the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR), Finance Secretary Carlos G. Dominguez III clarified today.
Following a New York Times report that Trump or his companies paid $156,824 in the Philippines in 2017, Dominguez said that entities “which may or may not be owned” by the US president may have had transactions in the country and were subject to local taxes.
“Based on our records, Donald Trump is not a taxpayer in the Philippines. However, companies with his name, or which may or may not be owned by him, may have had transactions with Philippine counter parties, such as royalty agreements,” Dominguez said.
These royalty payments, Dominguez said “would have been subject to withholding tax in the Philippines.”
To recall, local real-estate firm Century Properties Group had partnered with the Trump Organization in 2012 for the construction of the Trump Tower, an upscale residential building in Makati City.
According to a New York Times report, Trump paid just $750 in federal income taxes in 2016, the year he won the election, citing tax return data extending more than 20 years.
It added that he also paid only $750 in his first year in the White House, and he had paid no income taxes at all in 10 of the previous 15 years because he reported losing much more money than he made.
Trump immediately dismissed the report as “totally fake news.” (With AFP)