BAGUIO CITY – The management of SM City Baguio was able to pay to the city government some P129.9 million representing real property and business taxes over the past twelve years, making its contributions counted in efforts to implement priority development projects and enhance the delivery of basic services to the people.
Karren Nobres, SM City Baguio Public Relations Manager, said management makes sure that it settles its obligations to the local government right at the start of the year being a responsible taxpayer in the city.
From 2003 to 2008, she disclosed SM management paid to the city the sum of P7.4 million in real property taxes annually before it increased to around P7.5 million annually from 2009 up to 2014.
In terms of business taxes, she revealed SM City paid to the city government the sum of P2.5 million before it dropped to only P203,000 in 2004 and again rose to P1.6 million in 2005. From 2006 to 2014, SM management paid its business taxes which significantly increased through the years, 2006 – P2.6 million; 2007 – P3.6 million; 2008 – P3.9 million; before dropping to P3.4 million in 2009 before again increasing to P3.6 million in 2010. In 2011, SM paid to the city P3.9 million in business taxes; P4.2 million in 2012; P4.6 million in 2013 and P5.05 million in 2014.
“SM City Baguio is committed to pay to the local government the real property and business taxes assessed for its continued operations of the mall at Luneta Hill in order to contribute in the generation of sufficient resources to boost the economy of the city as a prime tourist destination,” Nobres stressed.
For the past several years, SM and its chain of stores had been adjudged by the city government as one of the city’s top ten real property and business tax payers.
The city government issued certificates of recognition to each of the top ten real property and business taxpayers in the city in recognition of their significant contributions in the efforts of the local government to generate substantial resources for its continued programs and projects.
The SM City Baguio official said the mall management will continue to cooperate with the city government in the formulation of more crowd-drawing events in the coming months in order to continue enticing visitors from the lowlands to frequently come up to the Summer Capital and witness the conduct of unique activities to sustain the city’s identity as the one of the prime tourist destinations in the country.
She underscored the patronage of local residents and visitors to businesses within the mall has significantly contributed in the robust business opportunities that also resulted in the increased revenues and subsequently increased business taxes to be paid by the mall and its locators to the city government.
She appealed to the public to continue patronizing the mall and its locators as their contributions to the improved business climate in the mall will also translate to the benefit of the city in terms of the increasing business taxes that they pay the local government annually which will also be brought back to the people in the form of more development projects and improved delivery of basic services.