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BIR, BoC miss July collection targets

The tax and customs bureaus grew their collections in July but still fell short of targets, preliminary Finance department data showed.

The Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) netted P134.18 billion, up 14 percent from a year earlier and short of the month’s P134.72-billion goal.

Finance Assistant Secretary Mark Dennis Joven said July’s collections already included cigarette company Mighty Corp.’s P3.44-billion initial payment for its tax liabilities.

Year to date collections rose to P987.79 billion, below the target of about P1.39 trillion.
The BIR has been directed to collect a total of P1.82 trillion this year.

The Bureau of Customs, meanwhile (BoC) collected P34.82 billion in duties and taxes in July. This was up 12.3 percent from a year ago but missed the July target of P39.18 billion.

Year-to-date collections of P246.98 billion also fell short of the P257.14 billion target.

For the full year, the BoC has been assigned a P468-billion revenue target.

The Finance department’s Joven said the below-target were not a cause of concern.

“Actually our target on an annual basis is around 14 to 15 percent growth rate. So as far as the month of July is concerned, BIR’s 14 percent is quite near and BoC’s 12.3 percent is not too far,” he told reporters.

To improve collections, Joven said both agencies are trying to increase voluntary compliance, revenues from which comprise 97 to 98 percent of total collections.

“By focusing more on voluntary compliance, the bottomline effect will be catered. How do you do that exactly? It’s a two-pronged approach,” he said.

This involves going after “big fish” and making it easier for people to pay their taxes, Joven explained.
(M.U. Caraballo, MT)