• SC rules for Bloomberry against BIR tax hike

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    The Supreme Court (SC) has ruled in favor of a petition that Bloomberry Resorts & Hotels Inc (BRHI), a unit of Bloomberry Resorts Corp., filed against the 30 percent corporate income tax the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) slapped on it as a casino operator.

    A disclosure by Bloomberry Resorts Corp to the Philippine Stock Exchange said the high court granted the certiorari petition on August 10 but the company received it only on September 5.

    The ruling, an en banc decision, affirmed the argument of Bloomberry that as contracting party of Pagcor, it was subject only to the 5 percent franchise tax on its gross gaming revenue, in lieu of all taxes, as provided under Section 13(2) of Presidential Decree No. 1869 (the PAGCOR Charter).

    BRHI had petitioned the court to have the provision of the Revenue Memorandum Circular (RMC) No 33-1023 that the former BIR Commissioner Kim Henares issued in 2013, imposing 30 percent corporate income tax on casinos, nullified.

    The high court ordered Pagcor to retain the original license fee structure for BRHI.

    Bloomberry, together with unit BRHI, operates the casino and hotel and restaurant components of integrated casino resort Solaire Resort & Casino.

    Aside from Bloomberry, the BIR is also pushing to impose the 30 percent corporate income tax to the three casino operators which are Travellers International Hotel Group Inc. (operator of Resorts World Manila), Melco Crown (Philippines) Resorts Corp. (City of Dreams), and Tiger Resorts Leisure and Entertainment Inc. (Okada Manila).

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