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Customs beats Jan. collection target by 12%

Over a thousand cases of cigarettes worth P36 million were seized by the Bureau of Customs – Port of Zamboanga on Jan. 25. — COURTESY OF BUREAU OF CUSTOMS

THE BUREAU of Customs (BoC) collected P58.16 billion in January, beating its target by 11.58% as international trade rebounded.

This was also 23% higher than the P47.27 billion the BoC collected in the same month in 2021.

The BoC in its preliminary report said that 14 out of 17 collection districts hit their targets last month as they ramped up efforts to go after illegal imports.

Revenue collections also improved because of “compliance by traders to customs laws, the gradual improvement of importation volume, and the government’s effort in ensuring unhampered movement of goods domestically and internationally,” the bureau said in a news release on Wednesday.

Among BoC collection districts, the ports of San Fernando, Port of Manila, Manila International Container Port, Batangas, Legaspi, Iloilo, Cebu, Surigao, Zamboanga, Davao, Subic, Clark, Aparri and Limay hit their targets.

It has set itself an internal target to collect nearly P700 billion this year, after being assigned to collect P679 billion by its supervising agencies.

The BoC collected P645.77 billion in 2021, 20% higher than the P537-billion collection in 2020 and 4.7% above the target.

Last year’s collection already exceeded the P630.31 billion generated in 2019 as international trade rebounded after the economic downturn.

Imports had declined in 2020 due to the disruption of business activity and internal movement restrictions among the Philippines’ trading partners, the World Bank said in a recent report. — Jenina P. Ibañez