BIR: Tax collection unaffected by Covid-19, so far

The Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) said its partial tax revenues for the first quarter of the year still grew to P330 billion despite the negative effects of the novel coronavirus disease (Covid-19) on some sectors. 

As of March 10, BIR Head Executive Assistant Rosario M. Padilla said they were able to collect P332,538 billion.

This was significantly higher compared to the P320 billion collection in the same period last year. 

Last month, some tax officials said they are already anticipating lower tax collections from hotels, malls, and manufacturers, which were affected by the travel bans related to Covid-19. 

Padilla explained it is still too early for them to determine the impact of Covid-19 in terms of tax collection. 

She said they might be able to come out with a evidence-based assessment by April when companies will be filing their quarterly Value Added Tax (VAT) returns.

“The quarterly filing, which is on April 20 and 25. The percentage [of the collected] taxes will be compare  with the previous year. Then we will  make the analysis. For now we don’t have the data for the analysis,” Padilla said. 

When asked if the BIR will consider giving tax breaks to the virus-affect companies, Padilla said the decision on the matter will be up to lawmakers.  

“Giving out tax breaks is not the function of BIR. The [tax] exemption and the amnesty and anything pertaining to the tax will originate from Congress. We are just the implementing agency so we will just follow what they will tell us,” Padilla explained. 


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