THE Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) is targeting to P2.33 trillion this year, 14% higher than the P2.04 trillion goal last year as it plans to introduce new reforms and leverage on technology to improve tax payments and collections.
The BIR — which contributes about three-fourths of total government tax revenues — made the announcement during the National Tax Campaign Kickoff held in Manila City on Friday.
If achieved, the 2019 tax collection goal will be 18% higher than the P1.96 trillion that the BIR collected last year.
“If you look at the history of hitting the goal, it’s difficult. But the difficulty will not stop us from exerting all our effort to go for the goal, because that’s important for the economy and the projections of our economic managers,” BIR Commissioner Caesar R. Dulay told reporters following the event.
In a speech, Finance Secretary Carlos G. Dominguez expressed confidence the BIR will be able to meet its goal this year, even though it missed last year’s target.
“The BIR attained 96 percent of the goal we set for ourselves. Some people are criticizing us that we didn’t meet 100 percent or didn’t exceed it. But I think in any class, if you hit 96 percent, medyo okay na (it is almost okay)… This year, even if the goals are set higher, I am confident the Bureau will achieve a higher attainment rate,” he said.
Mr. Dominguez said the tax bureau will introduce services to allow the public to pay taxes more efficiently.
“The VAT (value-added tax) refund system will work within the 90-day period for settling claims. We will observe closely the provisions of the Ease of Doing Business law aiming more efficient delivery of government services,” Mr. Dominguez said.
In a business forum in December, Finance Undersecretary Karl Kendrick T. Chua said the government introduced an enhanced VAT refund system under the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion Law, that allows VAT refunds to be completed within 90 days.
“We will continue to streamline our administrative processes, such as the creation of Fast Lanes for simple transactions. We will continue to improve our systems to lessen downtime and improve taxpayer satisfaction,” Mr. Dominguez added.
The Finance chief also noted that the state will “take full advantage” of new hardware and software to streamline its operations through implementing fuel marking and testing program to plug leakages in value-added tax (VAT) collection from fuel products and monitoring sales through cash register machines and point-of-sale terminals, among others. — Karl Angelo N. Vidal