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Tax bureau lines up priorities for this year

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BIR regional office

THE BUREAU of Internal Revenue (BIR) has laid out its priority programs for attaining its P3.018-trillion collection goal for this year.

Revenue Memorandum Circular 5-2019 spelled out 19 priority programs to help the bureau achieve its revenue target.

Items on the list included implementation of the fuel marking program, part of Republic Act No. 10963 — or the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) Act — that was not implemented even as the law itself took effect a year ago; optimization of the Internal Revenue Integrated System (IRIS); the TRAIN law Implementation Program; and implementation of RA 11032, or the Ease of Doing Business and Efficient Government Service Delivery Act.

“These priority programs are comprised of continuing priority programs from the previous year, and new undertakings, taking into account current developments in tax administration, such as the passage of the next phase of the Tax Reform Acceleration and Inclusion program, and the ongoing institutionalization of the various policies and guidelines in support of Republic Act No. 11032… and Republic Act No. 10173 (Data Privacy Act), as well as the results of the BIR Strategic Planning Sessions participated in by the Bureau’s top officials,” the circular read.

“All Bureau offices are therefore enjoined to align their activities and projects to the CY (collection year) 2019 Priority Programs, to ensure the achievement of the BIR’s CY 2019 Collection Target and the fulfillment of the Bureau’s mandate.”

The BIR raked in P1.801 trillion as of November, 11% more than the P1.621 trillion recorded in 2017’s comparable 11 months. That was 88.15% of the P2.043-trillion downward-adjusted 2018 revenue target.




This year’s target is 47.72% greater than that of 2018.

The BIR will draw up implementing guidelines for the marking of locally refined fuel and the testing of the presence of the markers in fuel stations nationwide.

Finance Undersecretary Antonette C. Tionko said on Friday last week that the Finance department expects the fuel marking program — designed to curb fuel smuggling — to be launched next month.

“For the fuel marking, the team that’s doing it is actually going already to the refineries. So that’s ongoing now. Hopefully by next month, February first week, we will launch it already,” Ms. Tionko said on Monday.

The delayed implementation of the fuel marking program, as well as the electronic invoicing and e-sales reporting — both initially scheduled for 2018 — were the reasons for the P26-billion downgrade of the overall 2018 revenue target to P2.846 trillion.

Moreover, the tax bureau seeks to pilot its electronic tax information system IRIS in the Makati City Revenue Region and the Large Taxpayers Service.

The BIR will also implement the Ease of Doing Business law, which shortens transaction processing time in transactions, as well as a single-window policy in the processing of applications of new business registration at revenue district offices (RDO).

The revenue agency will also ensure “strict compliance with new tax policies and tax payments/remittance system” under the TRAIN law, and at the same time “clarify certain issues raised in the implementation of the TRAIN law by issuing the appropriate revenue issuance.”

Other continuing programs to attain BIR’s collection targets include: imposing sanctions on delinquents via the Run After Tax Evaders and the Oplan Kandado program; intensified audit and investigation; enhanced implementation of the Arrears Management Program in the Regional Offices; broadening of the tax base by five percent; increase tax compliance by five percent through the Tax Account Management Program; implementation of the e-invoicing and e-sales reporting; massive tax education campaign; information and communications technology solutions for improved taxpayers service; sustained compliance with the Data Privacy Act; data sharing agreements with other government agencies; action on administrative cases against erring revenue officials and employees; expedite recruitment of new personnel and promotion of qualified employees; capacity building enhancements for BIR officials and employees; and the 100% utilization of budget appropriations. — Elijah Joseph C. Tubayan

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