BIR sets higher collection goal in 2019 after missing 2018 target

MANILA, Philippines – Inflation and unforeseen governance hiccups spoiled the collection goal of the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) in 2018. This year, the agency is hungry for a comeback.

The BIR announced on Friday, February 1, its collection goal for 2019 is P2.33 trillion, 14% higher than last year’s P2.044 trillion target.

The agency collected P1.962 trillion in taxes in 2018, or 4.01% shy of the government’s goal. However, it was higher than the P1.78 trillion collected in 2017.

BIR Commissioner Cesar Dulay said they can achieve the goal by implementing reforms and expanding the tax base.

The BIR was able to increase the tax base or the number of tax payers and businesses by 5% in 2018.

Dulay did not mention how much growth the agency is aiming for the tax base in 2019, but said they would increase it "as much as we can."

Dulay also said the BIR would put emphasis on law enforcement this year, intensifying audit efforts and crackdowns on delinquent businesses.

Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III congratulated the BIR for its collections in 2018 despite missing the mark. 

Dominguez said that meeting over 96% of its collection target was a “passing grade.” – Rappler.com

Ralf Rivas

A sociologist by heart, a journalist by profession. Ralf is Rappler's business reporter, covering macroeconomy, government finance, companies, and agriculture.

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