If you're thinking about engaging in online barter trade, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) has bad news for you.
The government agency confirmed that the cashless exchange of goods or services is against the law due to its taxless nature, with the exception of Sulu and Tawi-Tawi in Mindanao, where barter was revived via Executive Order No. 64.
"Sa ibang lugar, hindi po allowed yung barter trade. Kailangan regular transactions tayo diyan at dapat may tax na binabayaran," Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez said during the regular Laging Handa briefing on Tuesday.
Some communities were reportedly bringing back the cashless system with the help of the Internet amid the coronavirus pandemic. The DTI advised online sellers to register, which makes it easier to regulate transactions and address complaints.
As for those who will continue with online barter, Lopez said, "Ipapahanap natin yun dahil ilegal po yung activity... Diyan po umaaksyon naman po yung team, yung composite team ng DTI, PNP (Philippine National Police), at NBI (National Bureau of Investigation)."
A month ago, the Bureau of Internal Revenue also told online merchants to register and pay their taxes, as e-commerce blew up during the community quarantine.