Tax Incentive Programs

The Philippine government has several tax incentive programs depending on the nature of one’s business, with different incentive schemes available relative to the location and registration of the proposed business activity.
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Zamboanga Economic Zone Authority (ZEZA)

Zamboanga City’s Special Economic Zone Authority, created by virtue of Republic Act No. 7903, is dubbed as an economic haven in this part of the region, being unique as both an economic zone and Freeport, and the only Freeport in Visayas and Mindanao.

With the issuance by the Bureau of Customs of a special administrative order classifying the Zamboanga Freeport Authority as a separate Customs territory, the free flow, entry and movement of machinery and other goods sans the imposition of local and national tariffs are guaranteed.
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Qualifications

Both foreign and local investors within the Freeport zone with export and/or domestic market can apply for registration and availment of incentives.

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Incentives

• Income Tax Holiday (ITH): 6 years for pioneer projects, 4 years for non-pioneer projects, and 3 years for expansion projects
• 5% tax rate imposition on gross income and exemption from all national and local taxes upon expiry of ITH
• Tax- and duty-free importation of raw materials, equipment and other articles
• Permanent resident visas for foreign investors (and immediate family members) with investment of at least US$150,000
• Other incentives under the Presidential Decree No. 66 or those provided under Book VI of the Omnibus Investment Code of 1987


Requirements:

Single Proprietorship

• Company Profile, including Track Record and Business Plan;
• Detailed list of assets comprising the investment to be made;
• Evidence of intended physical location of the enterprise within the Zamboanga Freeport (e.g., Commitment letter or other similar documents) and the manner by which the location was secured (i.e., secured directly from the authority or from a licensed facilities operator); and
• Proof of inward foreign remittance and investment (for foreign investors).

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Partnership/Corporation

• Documents of legal status (SEC Registration, Articles of Incorporation, Partnership Agreement);
• Company Profile, including Track Record and Business Plan;
• Detailed list of assets comprising the investment to be made;
• Evidence of restructuring which excludes the operations of its ZEZA enterprise from business operations outside of ZEZA (if part of a larger enterprise doing business outside the ZEZA);
• Evidence of intended physical location of the enterprise within the Zamboanga Freeport; and
• Proof of inward foreign remittance and investment.

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Procedure:

• Submit application to Marketing and Enterprise Development Department (MEDD) for evaluation;
• Submit Evaluation Report to the Board for deliberation and approval;
• Secure Certificate of Registration and Tax Exemption upon Board approval;
• Sign lease agreement;
• Apply for Building Permit; and
• Secure Certificate of Occupancy and Permit to Operate.

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