REGARDING A July 13 BizBuzz item, on imports of SteelAsia and written by Daxim Lucas, please be informed that the piece is completely wrong. Had he called us for our side and explanation, the damage his piece created to our company and to Benjamin Yao, our president, would have been avoided.
Lucas has completely adopted the side of certain parties who have come out with these same allegations in other newspapers days and weeks earlier.
Lucas claims we only declared $205 per metric ton for our billets imported from Russia last December, or below the roughly $240 reference value followed by the Bureau of Customs for the purpose of taxation. What his informer omitted, perhaps to put us in a bad light, was that the $205 was an FOB value and not the taxable value. We bought the billets at CIF—meaning, after adding the cost of insurance and freight, and the 3-percent duty imposed on Russian billets, the value used by the Bureau of Customs was $242/MT. These prices can be back-checked through the reference site www.steelbb.com.
The 12-percent VAT we paid on this transaction was made through the bank-to-customs bureau system.
We would appreciate a correction of the piece and, if there are other issues to be clarified, to get our side first before publication. SteelAsia is the country’s largest steel reinforcement bar producer, and, as a result, is a major payer of duties and taxes. A simple phone call would prevent undeserved damage to reputation.
—MA. TERESA L. PACIS, assistant vice president, Corporate Communication, SteelAsia