In first quarter
The government registered a net revenue gain in the implementation of the Duterte administration’s first tax reform law in the first three months of the year owing to higher taxes remitted by the tobacco industry.
Instead of a net loss of at least P3.2 billion in January to March, the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) reported to the House ways and means committee that the government generated P12.5 billion in additional revenues from the tax reform for acceleration and inclusion act (TRAIN).
Based on the BIR data, the main driver of the above program revenue collection from TRAIN was the excise tax on cigarette products.
The government only programmed P686.1-million tax revenues from cigarettes, but the BIR collected P14.97 billion from January to March this year.
BIR Assistant Commissioner Alfredo V. Misajon explained the higher than expected revenues from cigarettes is attributable to the stable consumption of tobacco products despite the several increases in excise tax rates.
“We noticed that although we increased the rates on the excise tax of tobacco, we’ve seen that the consumption of tobacco had not been tapering off because maybe it’s just the initial months of the implementation,” Misajon said.
The BIR official also said that some cigarette manufacturers had not raised their retail prices despite the increase in excise levies.
Aside from tobacco, the BIR also surpassed its P409.4-million collection target on stocks transaction of traded stocks by 175 percent to P1.12 billion, while on capital gains of non-trade stocks by 29 percent to P1 billion against the target of P777 million.
Revenues from documentary stamp tax, likewise, exceeded the goal of P7.6 billion by 23 percent to P8.72 billion, while foreign current deposit unit raised P159.71 million, surpassing the P99.72- million goal by 60 percent.
Excise tax on coal also breached the target of P166.62 million, generating a total of P305.8 million at end-March, while donors tax amounted to P61.06 million, a reversal of the expected P376.19 million in revenue loss.
The government also missed its expected foregone revenues from the reduction in personal income tax (PIT) rate and estate tax.
In the first-quarter, the government’s forgone revenues from PIT amounted only to P23.34 billion, below the P36.04 billion program, while estate tax losses reached P225.23 million, lower than the P361.72-billion ceiling.
C. Leyco, mb.com