The issue of Balikbayan Bo is not yet over for Overseas Filipino's. Though the random opening of boxes was stopped by President Aquino, the worries from the OFWs remain.
ISSUE NO. 1
TAX EXEMPTION OF THE TOTAL AMOUNT OF THE BALIKBAYAN BOX THAT AN OFW CAN SEND OR BRING HOME TO THE PHILIPPINES: P10,000
Rep. Roy Seneres of the OFW Family partylist summarizes it in this post.
The existing law that the BOC wanted to implement was E.O. 206 of Pres. Cory Aquino dated June 30, 1987. The EO says OFWs may bring home items from abroad which should be tax and duty free, provided: 1. The total cost of the items should not exceed P10K; they must be used personal effects; and must be one of a kind; 2. The luggage must be accompanied by the OFW or if not possible the luggage must arrive within 60 days from dateof arrival of the OFW.
Note that per the tenor of the EO, the luggage may be opened by BOC otherwise paano nila malaman na worth P10k lang ang laman o one of a kind lang na USED personal effects ang laman.
The State from FVR to PNOY did not strictly implement EO 206 as a tribute to the OFWs. But due to so-called abuses of the privilege, BOC Com. Lina wanted to enforce the law and the OFWs protested. Consequently PNoy directed Lina to back off. Huwag na buksan ang mga boxes except lang kung may na sniff na droga o may xray findings ng mga contrabands. At hindi basta-basta lang bubuksan, kailangan may witness galing sa OWWA or representative of any OFW association at kailangan naka record sa CCTV.
Upon invitation of Com. Lina I went to BOC yesterday to find out how they would implement the directive of PNoy. Sec Edwin Lacierda was also there. I suggested to both Com Lina and Sec Lacierda to ask PNoy to increase the P10k to P100k and sa halip na used personal effects lang puede rin brand new. Sagrado ang significance ng pagpadala ng BB boxes.Tanda yan ng pagmamahalan ng OFW at ng kanyang pamilya so dapat huwag ilimit lang sa mga gamit na. So kung gusto ng OFW ng brand new shoes sa kay Commander o brand new laptop kay bunsoy why not. At kung gusto magpadala ng brand new na relo sa bawat tsikiting why not para walang ingitan.
is seeking to increase the ceiling of tax- and duty-free items and goods from overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) from the present P10,000 ($213.99) to P150,000 ($3209.85).
Bureau of Customs however said that:
ISSUE NO. 2
THE NUMBER OF BALIKBAYAN BOXES THAT AN OFW CAN SEND TO THE PHILIPPINES.
ISSUE NO. 3
IT IS NOT ONLY BALIKBAYAN BOX BUT THOSE THAT OFW CAN BRING ARE ALSO LIMITED TO P10,000 AS STATED IN THIS LAW.
EXECUTIVE ORDER NO. 206 June 30, 1987
AMENDING SECTION 105 OF THE TARIFF AND CUSTOMS CODE OF THE PHILIPPINES
WHEREAS, there is a need to adjust the maximum dutiable value of conditionally free importations of personal and household effects belonging to residents of the Philippines returning from abroad to a realistic level;
WHEREAS, to curb abuses in conditionally free importations under Section 105 (f) of the Tariff and Customs Code of the Philippines, the conditions for such importations must be restricted;
WHEREAS, there is also a need to recognize the magnitude of the contribution of the overseas contract workers whose lonely sacrifices in foreign lands bring in a considerable amount of foreign exchange annually thereby contributing to the national recovery effort;
NOW, THEREFORE, I, CORAZON C. AQUINO, President of the Philippines, do hereby order:
Sec. 1. Section 105 (f) of the Tariff and Customs Code of the Philippines is hereby amended and a new subsection (f-1) is hereby added thereto, to read as follows:
Conditionally-Free Importations. . . .
(f) Personal and household effects belonging to residents of the Philippines returning from abroad including jewelry, precious stones and other articles of luxury which were formally declared and listed before departure and identified under oath before the Collector of Customs when exported from the Philippines by such returning residents upon their departure therefrom or during their stay abroad; personal and household effects including wearing apparel, articles of personal adornment (except luxury items), toilet articles, instruments related to one's profession and analogous personal or household effects, excluding vehicles, watercraft, aircraft and animals purchased in foreign countries by residents of the Philippines which were necessary, appropriate and normally used for their comfort and convenience during their stay abroad, accompanying them on their return, or arriving within a reasonable time which, barring unforeseen and fortuitous events, in no case shall exceed sixty (60) days after the owner's return: Provided, That the personal and households effects shall neither be in commercial quantities nor intended for barter, sale or hire and that the total dutiable value of which shall not exceed Ten Thousand Pesos (P10,000.00): Provided, further, That the returning resident has not previously availed of the privilege under this section within three hundred sixty five (365) days prior to his arrival: Provided, finally, That a fifty percent (50%) ad valorem duty across the board shall be levied and collected on the personal and household effects (except luxury items) in excess of Ten Thousand Pesos (P10,000.00).
For the purposes of this section, the phrase "returning residents" shall refer to nationals who have stayed in a foreign country for a period of at least six (6) months.
(f-1) In addition to be privilege granted under the immediately preceding paragraph, returning overseas contract workers shall have the privilege to bring in, duty and tax free, used home appliances, limited to one of every kind once in a given calendar year accompanying them on their return, or arriving within a reasonable time which, barring unforeseen and fortuitous events, in no case shall exceed sixty (60) days after the owner's return upon presentation of their original passport at the Port of Entry: Provided, That any excess of Ten Thousand Pesos (P10,000.00) for personal and household effects and/or of the number of duty and tax-free appliances as provided for under this section, shall be subject to the corresponding duties and taxes provided under this Code.
For purposes of this section, the following words/phrases shall be understood to mean:
a. Overseas Contract Workers Holders of valid passports duly issued by the Department of Foreign Affairs and certified by the Department of Labor and Employment/Philippine Overseas Employment Agency for overseas employment purposes. It covers all nationals working in a foreign country under employment contracts, including Middle East Contract Workers, entertainers, domestic helpers, regardless of their employment status in the foreign country.
b. Calendar Year shall cover the period from January 1 to December 31."
Sec. 2. All laws, orders, issuances, rules and regulations or parts thereof inconsistent with this Executive Order are hereby repealed or modified accordingly.
Sec. 3. This Executive Order shall take effect immediately.
Done in the City of Manila, this 30th day of June, in the year of Our Lord, nineteen hundred and eighty-seven. Source: