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BIR shuts down coffee shop, bar in The Fort

By Ronnel Domingo
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 20:36:00 09/17/2009

Filed Under: Economy and Business and Finance, Government offices & agencies

MANILA, Philippines -- A popular coffee shop at the posh Bonifacio High Street shopping enclave and a bar and restaurant at The Fort, both in the Bonifacio Global City, have been closed down temporarily for not reporting most if not all of their sales revenues, according to the Bureau of Internal Revenue.

At the lower end of the market, enforcement agents of the BIR's anti-tax cheat drive dubbed Oplan Kandado (Lock Up) also swooped down on a beauty salon and a ?carinderia? in Caloocan City.

The BIR said the Bonifacio High Street branch of The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf (CBTL) was found to have not declared any of its sales revenues, among other violations.

BIR surveillance also revealed that CBTL failed to display in public the necessary papers for operating a business, including the annual registration fee or payment form, "Notice to the Public" poster, and certificate of registration (COR).

Further, CBTL was found to have used without authorization official receipts issued to another CBTL branch -- a separate company -- and a taxpayer identification number (TIN) different from the TIN indicated in its COR.

As a result, the coffee shop is considered to have failed to file value-added tax (VAT) returns and pay its VAT dues.

The BIR said an examination of cash registers showed that CBTL rang up P3.86 million in sales during the first quarter of 2009 alone.

On the other side of Bonifacio Global City, Porcelain restaurant was temporarily shut down for not declaring "at least 90 percent" of its sales in 2008 and in the first half of 2009.

Porcelain, like The Embassy bar and restaurant at The Fort nearby, is considered a watering hole for young professionals.

In Caloocan City, the BIR shuttered Yet's Beauty Salon because it was operating despite not being registered with the agency.

The same fate befell Magic 8, described as a "small but popular neighborhood restaurant," which neither kept a book of account nor issued receipts.

In Makati City, Oplan Kandado agents locked up unregistered businesses like Concept One Trade Marketing, AL Mhar Fone Trading, and Sams Cellphone Center, all located on the third floor of Waltermart along A. Arnaiz Street.

Oplan Kandado is the flagship project of the BIR aimed at strictly enforcing sanctions for non-compliance by business establishments with requirements of the Tax Code.



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