Supporting farmers, fishers under Sagip Saka Law
Agri Party-list Rep. Wilbert T. Lee has filed a measure to provide additional tax incentives on gifts and donations to accredited farmers and fisherfolk enterprises.
Lee filed House Bill No. 2418, amending Section 12 of Republic Act No. 11321, or the “Sagip Saka Act” which was signed into law in 2019, to invite the private sector to help and support agricultural workers.
“Considering the present need to increase support to agribusinesses with the unprecedented challenges they face, this measure seeks to further encourage the private sector to donate to accredited farmers and fisherfolk enterprises under the Farmers and Fisherfolk Enterprise Program by declaring that donors of real and personal properties to these enterprises, in addition to being exempted from the payment of donor’s tax, shall be permitted to claim those donations as allowable deductions from the gross income,” Lee said.
“To convince them further to help and donate, the allowable deductions on the gross income shall be made equivalent to one hundred fifty percent (150%) of the value of the donation which shall be based on the acquisition cost, fair market value or zonal value, whichever is higher,” he added.
The creation of the Farmers and Fisherfolk Enterprise Development Program integrates the different programs of the Department of Agriculture to support farmers and fisherfolk cooperatives and enterprises, optimize their business operations, and provide them with more opportunities for markets and product development.
Currently, the government’s support to farmers and fisherfolks is through agricultural and fishery inputs, provision of production/processing/storage facilities, technical assistance including training for productivity and business management, grant of equipment and machinery, the direct purchase of agricultural and fishery products without the need of public bidding, direct access to markets, and partnership with the private sector.
The said partnership can be done through marketing contracts, technology transfer, financial and organizational capability enhancement, and donation of equipment, and other real or personal properties to the accredited farmers and fisherfolk enterprises.
According to Lee, the proposed measure will provide much needed support to deserving accredited farmers and fisherfolk enterprises that have undergone strict selection criteria under the Farmers and Fisherfolk Enterprise Development Program.
“Kapag po mas na-engganyo at ginanahan ang pribadong sektor na tumulong sa mga negosyo o inisyatiba para sa mga magsasaka at mangingisda, mas maraming panggagalingan ng suporta, na magbibigay sa kanila ng dagdag na kumpiyansa na pataasin ang kanilang produksyon at kita. (When the private sector is encouraged to help farmers and fishermen with business and initiatives, there are more sources of support to help them improve their production and profit.)” explained Lee.
“Makikinabang po dito ang marami pa nating mga kababayan at ang buong bansa dahil magbibigay-daan ito sa mas murang halaga ng pagkain at malaki rin ang maiaambag sa pagkamit ng inaasam nating food security. (Many of our countrymen and country can benefit because it results in more affordable food and food security.)” he added.