The Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) collected P274.429 billion in October. — PHILIPPINE STAR/ RUSSELL PALMA

THE BUREAU of Internal Revenue (BIR) collected P274.429 billion in October, surpassing its target for the month by 8.57%.

The October tally also jumped by 46.94% from P186.759 billion in actual collections a year earlier.

“With the intensification of the bureau’s tax enforcement activities, specifically on the campaign against sellers and buyers of fake receipts, and with the continuous streamlining and digitization of the BIR’s core services, we hope to encourage all noncompliant taxpayers to comply fully with the provisions and requirements of the tax laws,” BIR Commissioner Romeo D. Lumagui, Jr. said in a statement on Tuesday.

In the 10-month period, BIR revenues rose by 11.1% to P2.132 trillion from P1.919 trillion a year ago.

The agency’s collection from January to October already accounted for about 80% of its full-year target.

The BIR is targeting to collect P2.64 trillion this year, which is 13% higher than its collection of P2.34 trillion in 2022.

Mr. Lumagui said the agency would likely reach or even surpass its collection target for the year.

Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. Chief Economist Michael L. Ricafort said the improvement in tax collection was due to the recovery of businesses and other economic activities that led to increased sales, spending and employment.

“Intensified tax collections based on existing tax laws also improved BIR tax revenue collections, as part of fiscal reform measures,” he said in a Viber message.

The BIR has been studying ways to expand its tax base, including using a digital platform.

Last month, it released the final draft of its proposed creditable withholding tax policy for gross remittances of electronic marketplace operators to online sellers. 

Under the draft, a withholding tax of 1% will be imposed on one-half of the gross remittances by domestic e-marketplace operators to online merchants for goods or services sold through their facility.

Earlier, BIR Assistant Commissioner Jethro M. Sabariaga said the agency’s collection for the remainder of the year is expected to be driven by household consumption and government spending.

The BIR collects about 70% of government revenue. Luisa Maria Jacinta C. Jocson