BOC misses October collection goal
(The Philippine Star) - November 8, 2015 - 9:00am

MANILA, Philippines - For a fourth straight month, the Bureau of Customs missed its collection goal in October, preliminary data showed.

Customs, which accounts for a fifth of government revenues, collected P31.8 billion last month, 26 percent below its P43.002-billion target. The bureau last met its collection goal in June.

Aside from missing its goal, the agency’s collections also fell 6.9 percent from last year’s P34.16 billion. This represented the third consecutive month of contraction for Customs.

“Twelve out of 17 ports did not meet their targets as of the third week of October,” the bureau said in a statement.

Among others, the port of Manila was behind by 30 percent from its monthly goal, while that from Batangas was below by 22 percent. Total amount of collections so far were unavailable.

From January to October, Customs has already collected P299 billion, down slightly from last year’s P299.95 billion. It was also 16 percent off the 10-month target.

According to the agency, the Batangas port was below by more than half against its year-to-date goal, while the port in San Fernando, Pampanga was down 30 percent.

In a media roundtable last Tuesday, Customs commissioner Alberto Lina reiterated Customs collections were highly affected by falling oil prices.

Revenues from oil account for 30 percent of the bureau’s collections, Lina said, and lower prices resulting in lower valuations have cost “around P50 billion” so far this year.

Because of this, Customs had said it is “closely monitoring valuation in oil,” as well as “steel and rice” to ensure the right amount of duties are collected.

Lina further said the bureau is banking on the passage of the Customs Modernization and Tariff Act (CMTA) now pending on the second reading in the Senate.

“We think it could be passed hopefully before Christmas. It could serve as the President’s early Christmas gift to us,” he said.

The CMTA bill is one of the priority legislation of the Aquino administration that aim, among others, to enhance the bureau’s electronic trade facilitation to reduce avenues for corruption on man-to-man transactions.

It targets to amend the country’s Tariff and Customs Code, which was last reformed in 1978.

“The CMTA could really help us boost our collections,” Lina said.

 

ACIRC ALBERTO LINA BATANGAS BUREAU OF CUSTOMS CUSTOMS CUSTOMS MODERNIZATION AND TARIFF ACT FROM JANUARY NBSP PERCENT SAN FERNANDO TARIFF AND CUSTOMS CODE
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