Saturday, August 15, 2015

#Philippines' nonsense Tax Law keeps it mired in Third World inefficiency


It's a nightmare. It reads like it was written by Idi Amin when he was 12. If you want to comply with all that when starting a business, you have to be rich to start with; and then you have to get richer, because the taxman will be around within 30 days to demand tax money that you haven't earned yet.

Now read the Anti-Dummy Law. If you can even make sense of the wording, you're a better man than I am.

Now try interacting with the bureaucracy, which just does its own thing. Laws? They don't need no stinkin' Laws. It's an absolute shambles. You have to run hither and thither to get a license from this guy and a stamp from that guy, and if you don't there'll be some other guy coming to shut you down or demand 'fines'. It's a full-time job.

All of this nonsense is what DEFINES a third-world country. It's what MAKES them third-world. If people are wasting all their time chasing bits of paper and official stamps, they're not running their business. The average person concludes it's not worth the effort; he decides he might as well just sit outside the sari-sari store drinking and waiting for the local bigwig or foreign NGOs to do stuff for him. And in a way, he's right.

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