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Mar 29, 2016 @ 8:04

CTA orders BIR to refund Dole Philippines P625M

The Court of Tax Appeals has ordered the Bureau of Internal Revenue to refund Dole Philippines Inc. P625 million for unutilized excess input taxes in 2011.

Dole started as a pineapple grower in Hawaii in 1901 and has since diversified into vegetables and other fruits as well as food processing.

Dole Philippines, which is based in Polomolok, South Cotabato, sent the BIR a letter on January 17, 2013, applying for a cash refund of its excess input VAT on zero-rated goods and services it purchased for the year 2011 for P779 million and filed an application for tax credits or refunds. Dole Philippines filed an instant petition for review at the CTA on June 28, 2013.

On July 12, 2013, the CTA ordered the BIR Commissioner to answer Dole Philippines’ petition.

The BIR said Dole Philippines claim for a tax credit certificate or refund was subject to “administrative routinary investigation/examination and that the taxes it paid are “presumed to have been made in accordance with law, hence, not refundable.”

The BIR said Dole Philippines application for a refund was not fully substantiated, adding that the burden of proof is on the company.

The court ordered that an independent certified public accountant be tapped for the case.

The CTA’s third division said the sole issue it needed to determine was the amount of tax refund that Dole Philippines was entitled to.

In a decision dated March 18, 2016 penned by Justice Lovell Bautista, the CTA’s third division said Dole Philippines substantially proved that it was entitled to a refund.

The court appointed independent certified public accountant, however, did not allow the refund for P68 million. The court also cut the refund claim by some P53 million because it did not meet the substantiation requirements.

“In fine, petitioner (Dole Philippines) has sufficiently proven its entitlement to a refund or issuance of tax credit certificate in the reduced amount of P625 million, representing unutilized excess input taxes attributable to its zero-rated sales for the taxable year 2011,” the decision said. (By:Eileen A. Mencias)


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