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BOC: 2021 collection goal can be attained

By: - Reporter / @bendeveraINQ
/ 05:18 AM February 03, 2021

The Bureau of Customs (BOC) expects to hit its full-year revenue target of P616.7 billion in 2021 as it surpassed its January goal amid improving economic conditions.

“Our collection target is based on DBCC [Development Budget Coordination Committee] projections, forecasts and assumptions. Our target is attainable provided the same remained valid,” Customs Commissioner Rey Leonardo Guerrero told the Inquirer Tuesday.

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In January, the BOC’s take from import duties and other taxes amounted to P47.14 billion, 6.9-percent bigger than its P44.09-billion goal for the month.

In a statement Monday night, the BOC said 11 of its 17 ports exceeded their respective January revenue targets: Batangas, Cagayan de Oro, Clark, Davao, Iloilo, Legazpi, NAIA, Port of Manila, Subic, Tacloban and Zamboanga, citing a preliminary report of its financial service.

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Amid a pandemic-induced recession last year, the BOC’s actual tax-collection of P539.7 billion was 6.6-percent more than the downgraded 2020 goal of P506.2 billion but way below the record P630.3 billion it collected in 2019.

In its 2020 report, the BOC blamed the decline in collections to the “effects of the pandemic on global trade and commerce,” which resulted in a plunge in the volume of shipments of imported goods.

The latest government data showed the value of imports which entered the Philippines last year slid 23.3 percent to $85.61 billion—the second largest annual decline, eclipsed only by the 24.1-percent slump in 2009 due to the global financial crisis.

Also, the BOC had pointed to a “drop in the volume of imports and price of oil” last year.

For 2021, normalizing global oil prices and expectations of a reversal of the record 9.5-percent contraction in gross domestic product (GDP) last year would help the BOC achieve its revenue targets.

The DBCC had projected goods imports to climb by 8 percent this year.

In a report Tuesday, the state planning agency National Economic and Development Authority (Neda) noted Dubai crude oil future prices rose to $50.97 per barrel in January and would likely settle by yearend at $49.38 a barrel, or above last year’s prices.

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However, the Neda cautioned that “the new lockdown restrictions in major European countries brought by the detection of a new coronavirus [variant] along with the persistence of COVID-19 in many parts of the world continue to pose downside risks in global demand for oil.”

Economic growth would also likely be within the 6.5-7.5 percent growth target for 2021, the Neda said in a separate report Thursday.

The Neda said the median estimate of 11 private financial institutions and three multilateral lenders for this year was a 7.5-percent growth, the upper end of the government goal.

It said the 2021 growth target was hinged on expectations that “sustained improvement in health system capacity and the rollout of the vaccination program will allow further reopening of the economy” and that “investment and consumer sentiment will improve this year.”

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TAGS: Bureau of Customs (BOC), revenues
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