BIR targets P19.6-B tax collection from Panay, Guimaras in 2024

By Mariela Angella Oladive

The Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) has set its sights on collecting P19.6 billion in taxes from Panay and Guimaras taxpayers this year, marking a significant 23 percent increase from the previous year’s collection.

The ambitious goal was announced during the launching of the 2024 tax campaign led byBIR Region 11 and the Revenue District Office 74 on March 14 at the Iloilo Convention Center, in Mandurriao, Iloilo City.

“This (P19.6 billion tax collection goal) is one of the highest growth rates (23 percent) for the past 10 years in the Bureau of Internal Revenue. The goal seems huge, but I remain confident that it is achievable,” said BIR Region 11 Director Joseph Catapia.

He cited the potential success of the tax collection goal to factors including the thriving regional economy, upward trend in real estate values, and a growing pool of business registrants.

BIR Region 11 covers the provinces of Capiz, Iloilo, Aklan, Antique, and Guimaras.

The expected increase of P2 billion in the national tax allocation for local government units (LGUs) across the five provinces, coupled with enhanced budget allocations for government infrastructure projects through initiatives like the ‘Build Better More (BBM)’ program and the Pambansang Pabahay para sa Pilipino Program, are anticipated to bolster tax collection efforts.

Catapia further noted that the region has shown consistent growth in tax collection over the past five years, with the exception of a downturn in 2020 compared to 2019.

He revealed that in 2023, the region achieved a collection of P15.9 billion, marking an 8.25 percent increase from the previous year. However, despite the achievement, the region fell short of its target by PHP668 million or a deficit of a negative 4 percent.

While he emphasized the importance of collaboration among taxpayers, BIR, and tax practitioners, citing it as a key factor in achieving successful tax collection.

He urged all stakeholders to fulfill their responsibility in the tax collection process, emphasizing its significance in nation-building.

“We appeal to your responsibility and sense of patriotism for you to realize that paying your correct taxes is your sacred duty in making our beloved country a better place to live with, for our children, our children’s children, and the next generation to come,” Catapia expressed.

Additionally, he announced BIR’s digital initiatives, allowing taxpayers to register their businesses and pay taxes online through the Online Registration and Update System (ORUS).

In recognition of compliance and contribution, the BIR Region 11 also awarded the Top 5 taxpayers in individual, non-individual, and national government agency/LGU categories.

Awardees for the individual compliant taxpayers included Theodore Valderrama Sr., Romeo Go, Tommy Que, Samuel So Jr., and Theodore Valderrama Jr.

F. Gurrea Construction Inc., J.E. Tico Construction Co. Inc., Iloilo Supermart Inc., MCR Agri-Venture Corporation, and Visayan Vets Port Services Inc. received the award for non-individual taxpayers.

The top national government agencies/LGU category awardees included Western Visayas Medical Center, the Department of Education Division of Iloilo, the Iloilo City Government, the Department of Social Welfare and Development, and the Department of Health.

Themed “Sa Tamang Buwis, Pag-asenso’y Mabilis,” the launching of BIR’s tax campaign exemplifies the agency’s call for taxpayers to support in generating essential funds for the country’s economic recovery and development.

In line with the event, the general public is reminded to file their respective 2023 Annual Income Tax Returns (ITRs) on or before April 15, 2024. (With reports from PNA)