BAGUIO CITY – The giant chain of malls, its affiliates and tenants were able to pay some P272.99 million in business and real property taxes to the city government over the past eleven years, their presence felt as one of the city’s economic drivers.
From 2003 to 2013, SM Prime Holdings paid to the city government some P41.22 million in accumulated business taxes, its affiliates were also able to pay to the city business taxes amounting to P45.73 million while its over 50 tenants contributed a total of P108.70 million to the coffers of the local government representing their respective business taxes for their operations. On the other hand, SM management paid to the city government a total of P77.32 million in real property taxes from 2004 to 2013 that elevated both SM Prime Holdings and SM Investment Corporation to the Hall of Fame in the said category of tax payments.
Karren Nobres, SM City Baguio public relations manager, said SM management remains committed to religiously pay its business and real property taxes to the city government in order for the city to raise adequate revenues to bankroll the implementation of its priority development projects and enhance the delivery of basic services to the people.
“SM management is elated to be recognized as a Hall of Fame awardee in real property tax payments made to the city government. We know that our contributions to the city’s economy has significantly gained headway over the past several years which resulted to the increased tax payments,” Nobres stressed.
She cited the city’s good business climate coupled with its identity as one of the premier tourist destinations in the country has greatly contributed in attracting the influx of more investors and visitors to come to the city and spend during weekends, holidays and special occasions.
SM City Baguio started its full operation in November 2003 after a few years of construction, paving the way for the sudden growth in the city’s economic through the years.
She cited SM management continues to entertain possible tenants that would contribute in attracting the influx of more people to visit the mall for convenient shopping and entertainment as well as dining among others.
Mayor Mauricio G. Domogan commended the SM group of companies for their invaluable contributions in raising added revenues for the local government that would be plowed back to the people through the implementation of priority development projects and the improvement of the delivery of basic services.
“Baguio remains to be independent from the internal revenue allotment it is receiving from the national government. We want the city’s business sector to be vibrant so that there will be an enhanced generation of resources that will be used to implement programs and projects for the greater majority of our people,” Domogan said.
According to him, the public should understand that taxes are the lifeblood of the government that is why responsible taxpayers must continue paying their assessed taxes in order for their contributions to be counted in the overall development of the city in the coming years.
He assured local taxpayers that the city government is wisely utilizing the funds generated from them for the betterment of the majority of the people in order to handover to the present and future generations a better Baguio. By Dexter A. See