Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez writes a letter addressed to Jack Ma, the chairman and founder of Alibaba.com, regarding the online selling of digitally-made fake cigarette tax stamps being sold on the website.
In his letter, Dominguez appeals for the cooperation of Ma and his staff in Alibaba to stop and ban advertising and selling for fake cigarette tax stamps.
“Advertising and selling of fake tax stamps in the open, through your company’s web portal, provides so much room and easy access for individuals and entities to evade excise tax on cigarettes in the Philippines,” said Dominguez in his letter to Ma.
Dominguez also stated that advertisement and selling of the fake cigarette tax stamps in Alibaba gives easier access to cigarette manufacturers in the Philippines to evade their taxes.
Enclosed in the letter was a screenshot of the webpage in Alibaba.com where the particular advertisement of fake cigarette tax stamps was placed.
“Following the directive of the President (Rodrigo Duterte), the Philippine government, especially through the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) and the Bureau of Customs (BOC), is very much active in pursuing individuals and entities evading taxes and duties, including excise tax levied on cigarettes,” Dominguez added.
The finance chief also emphasized the continuous effort of the present admistration to hunt down tax evaders, including cigarette manufacturers.
“Advertising and selling of fake tax stamps in the open, through your company’s web portal, provides so much room and easy access for individuals and entities to evade excise tax on cigarettes in the Philippines,” explained Dominguez.
“Consequently, this will make it much more difficult for the said bureaus (BIR and BOC) to curb excise tax evasion and cigarette and fake tax stamps smuggling to our country,” he reiterated.
Chinese Ambassador to the Philippines Zhai Jianhua was also furnished with the letter.
Earlier this week, President Duterte has ordered the arrest Alexander Wongchuking, owner of Mighty Corporation, one of the country’s biggest cigarette manufacturer, for allegedly using fake cigarette tax stamps in their cigarette packs.