BIR, Customs exceed downscaled targets in August
As the economy gradually opened up amid easing COVID-19 quarantine restrictions, the country’s two biggest tax-collection agencies exceeded their respective targets in August, Finance Secretary Carlos G. Dominguez III said on Tuesday.
In a speech before members of the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI) during the Sulong Pilipinas workshop, Dominguez said the Bureau of Internal Revenue’s (BIR) tax take last month amounted to P172.06 billion, 45.6-percent bigger than the P118.2-billion target.
The Bureau of Customs (BOC), meanwhile, collected P44.65 billion in import duties and other taxes last August, 32.6-percent higher than the P33.68-billion goal.
Dominguez said these “hefty” tax collections were among the “strong indicators that the economy is starting to recover,” which also included a lower unemployment rate of 10 percent in July and improving factory output even as these remained lower than pre-pandemic levels.
However, the actual BIR and BOC collections in August fell below their year-ago amounts of P205.6 billion and P53.6 billion, respectively.
To recall, the government had reduced its tax revenue targets for 2020 amid a COVID-19 induced recession.
The BIR’s collections had been projected to drop to P1.69 trillion in 2020 from 2019’s record-high P2.18 trillion, while the BOC was expected to generate P498.3 billion in import duties and other taxes, down from P630.3 billion last year, 2021 budget documents showed.
For 2020, the government had programmed to collect P2.21 trillion in tax revenue, down from last year’s actual take of P2.83 trillion. —Ben O. de Vera INQ
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