Posted by: JWP | 02/10/2010

Gov’t-Moro Islamic Liberation Front to share taxes?

Philippine Government and MILF agree on sharing of taxes, says lawyer

gulfnews By Barbara Mae Dacanay, Bureau Chief Published 02/01/10

This was one of the seven points that were reached by negotiators of the Philippine government and the MILF in Malaysia last week.

Manila: The Philippine government and a rebel Muslim group agreed to share wealth earned by the autonomous area for Muslims in the southern Philippines, a government lawyer told Gulf News.

Camilo Montesa, lawyer of the government negotiators, said the Philippine government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) have agreed on “wealth sharing between the local government of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) and the national government”.

This was one of the seven points that were reached by negotiators of the Philippine government and the MILF in Malaysia last week, said Montesa who was with the government negotiators in Kuala Lumpur last week.

At the same time, both the Philippine government and the MILF also agreed to have share in controlling the natural resources in areas controlled by Filipino Muslims in the south, said Montes.

This item was one of the two more important points agreed upon by the two camps in Malaysia, Montes said, adding that property rights were also included in the concept of control of natural resources in the south.

Earlier, both the Philippine government and the MILF have agreed to have a 75-25 per cent share of earnings between the national government and the ARMM.

At the same time, both the Philippine government and the MILF have agreed on governance structure in the autonomous area, said Montesa, adding that it was an important point agreed by both camps. The lawyer refused to give details, but experts said this is related to extending more autonomy in ARMM as far as governance is concerned.

Both the Philippine government and the MILF have categorically not stated if they are pursuing ARMM’s expansion.

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