The Department of Trade and Industry has assured export groups that the government will resolve their concerns regarding the 12-percent value-added tax (VAT) slapped to indirect exports.

Trade Undersecretary Ceferino Rodolfo said the Bureau of Internal Revenue's Revenue (BIR) Revenue Regulation (RR) 9-2021 "has caused some uncertainty" in the country's export sector during a webinar hosted by the Intergated Development Studies Institute on Friday.

Export sales; and sales of services and use or lease of properties were listed by the regulation issued last June 11 as transactions that were previously VAT exempt and will now be taxed at 12 percent.

In particular, the BIR said in terms of export sale, subject to 12-percent VAT is the sale of raw materials or packaging materials to a non-resident buyer for delivery to a resident local export-oriented enterprise to be used in manufacturing, processing, packing or repacking in the Philippines of the said buyer's goods and paid for in acceptable foreign currency, and accounted for in accordance with the rules and regulations of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas.

Industry group Philippine Exporters Confederation Inc. (Philexport) highlighted worries regarding the impact of RR 9-2021 upon its introduction, which need to be resolved soon.

Companies are concerned that the implementation procedures and requirements, notably on applying for VAT refunds, will consume more time and money, according to Philexport President Sergio Ortiz-Luis Jr.

Entrepreneurs are expecting for "a favorable and urgent response on these issues" he said, in order to assist them recoup from their losses and continue operating their businesses.

Rodolfo, for his part, pointed out that the government, as always, is willing to listen to its stakeholders, and that exporters' problems are given high priority.

"The DTI is coordinating closely with the DoF (Department of Finance) and the BIR... This will be resolved. In fact, now there is a meeting going on between DoF, NEDA (National Economic and Development Authority), DTI and exporter groups," he said.