Philippines praised by WHO for imposing excise tax on SSBs

Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque said World Health Organization (WHO) praised the country for imposing excise tax on sugar-sweetened beverages (SSB), .

As per the Presidential Communications Operations Office, the Presidential Spokesman said WHO called the SSB taxation as “a great step forward in protecting the health of Filipinos.”

“With this development, we hope to contribute to our national health agenda and hopefully prevent the risks associated with overweight and obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, and tooth decay,” Roque said in a press briefing in Malacañang.

Imposing tax on SSBs is meant to encourage the Filipinos to consume healthier products and raise awareness on the negative effects of SSBs on one’s overall health.

The products covered by the SSB excise tax under the comprehensive tax reform program are sweetened juice drinks; sweetened tea; all carbonated beverages with added sugar, including those with caloric and non-caloric sweeteners; flavored water, energy drinks, sports drinks, other powdered drinks not classified as milk; cereal and other grain beverages, and other non-alcoholic beverages that contain added sugar.

Exempted from the excise tax are 3-in1- coffee, milk and 100% natural juice drinks.