BOI requires firms seeking tax incentives to plant trees

BOI requires firms seeking tax incentives to plant trees
– Des Ferriols –
March 19, 2000 | 12:00am

Businesses availing of tax credits and other incentives from the Board of Investments (BOI) will be required to plant trees or risk revocation of their privileges under the Investments Priorities Plan (IPP).

BOI Governor Antonio Leviste told reporters over the weekend that planting trees would now be a requirement for qualifying for incentives and failure to comply would be used as ground for the suspension or revocation of such incentives.

The policy is contained in BOI Memorandum Circular #1 which requires BOI-registered firms to plant at least 100 trees within their premises or along the perimeter of their compounds.

“The BOI aspires to make every registered firm an ‘oasis of greenery’ in their respective neighborhoods,” Leviste said.

According to him, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) would be providing the seedlings for narra, Philippine mahogany and acacia which companies can plant in their compounds.

“If they don’t have space even for perimeter planting, these BOI-registered firms can plant the trees in a park of their choosing, as long as they would be responsible for their care and maintenance,” Leviste said, adding “We will be auditing these companies for compliance.”

Under the memorandum circular, BOI-registered firms will be required to plant at least 100 forest trees in clusters of at least four meters apart within its premises or along the perimeters at a distance of two to four meters.

Leviste said the BOI and the DENR are also studying the possibility of using fast-growing species such as gmelina, eucalyptus and neem as an alternative to forest species which have a longer maturing period.

“The aims is not so much to undertake a massive nationwide reforestation but to rekindle in the business sector the motivation to take part in the effort of environmental protection and preservation,” said Leviste. “We are after the awareness and sense of responsibility of the business sector. We have to develop a culture of environmentalism.”

Under BOI rules, registered firms are entitled to various incentives such as tax holidays, tax credits on locally purchased capital equipment and other privileges. Leviste also noted that government would have to work on tapping sources of funding for environmental projects such as the Green Aid Plan (GAP) which funds projects involving waste management, recycling and the like.

“Out of the seven GAP countries, the Philippines has so far received the least amount,” he said. “The problem here is that we are not developing enough projects to tap this facility with.”

(c) Source: