BIR poised to score back-to-back surplus

THE Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) is expected to register a surplus in its October  revenue goal of P62.5 billion with preliminary figures showing that the agency has already surpassed its actual collection in the same period last year.

“This October, we surpassed last year’s collection and it’s looking good. If we base it alone on collections, then it seems like we’re doing okay,” BIR commissioner Kim Jacinto-Henares said.

Henares said the P54.9 billion collection posted by BIR in October 2009 has already been breached and was looking only for another P7.6 billion to meet and even surpass this year’s October goal of P62.5 billion.

If BIR reports an excess collection for October, it would be the first back-to-back overperformance by the agency since September when the agency reported excess collection for the first time since Henares took over the job as the country’s chief tax collector.

Last September, the BIR exceeded its monthly target of P59.89 billion by collecting P60.96 billion, an over performance of P1.06 billion.

The September tax collection was also 8.4% higher than the P56.24 billion booked in the same month in 2009.

“We have been increasing our collections. On the first month (in office) , it increased by almost 10% (against last year collection), second month, it increased by 17%. Although, we did not reach goals,” Henares said.

The BIR, together with other revenue agencies, are set to formally unveil their October performance on November 15.

The BIR chief nevertheless said attaining the revised full year target of P860 billion remains a big struggle.

“We’re still striving to reach the P860 billion but of course, we have to keep on working. (The original goal of) P840 billion is doable. But being sure and doable are two different things,” she said.

For the collection period of January to September, the BIR has so far generated a total of P607.33 billion, lower than its P638.07 billion target for the 9-month period and  253.07 billion shy of its full year target.

For the 2010, BIR is tasked to collect P860.44 billion, or higher by P30 billion than its original collection target, after the government recently adjusted the target collection of both the BIR and Bureau of Customs after the economy grew faster than expected in the first and second quarters. Dino Ng

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