BIR-GenSan 2007 collection fails to reach target

Revenue officials were quick to blame big businesses operating here for remitting their incomes elsewhere. “Because they are operating in the city, they have the social responsibility to remit their taxes here,” lamented Noel Gonzales, local BIR chief.

He said collections for the whole of 2007 reached only P921.2 million, P50 million short of the P971.3-million target.
Although short of the target, the collection in 2007, however, was up by 12 percent compared to 2006’s P824.4 million, Gonzales noted.

Late last year, the BIR wrote big businesses operating here to transfer their main offices to the city to increase tax collections. Gonzales said these are mainly tuna companies and those involved in the service and entertainment industries.

As of this time, General Tuna Corp., Ocean Canning Corp., Alliance Tuna International, Inc., and Seatrade Canning Corp. still remit their taxes in Metro Manila where their main offices are. They did not even bother to reply to the BIR’s letter.

Only one did — Alliance Tuna, which has its main office in Pasig City — to tell the BIR it is turning down the request.

Grace S. Dogillo, Alliance Tuna vice president for finance, said it is not easy to move the company’s headquarters here. “It is critical that we have easy access to all facilities that would enable us to comply with the stringent requirements not only of the Securities and Exchange Commission but also of the Philippine Stock Exchange,” she said.

She noted, too, that any amendments to their by-laws will need two-thirds approval of the stockholders, most of whom are based in Metro Manila.

Gonzales said that another reason they did not achieve the target collection was the adjustment in the local power sector’s value added tax. He pointed out that they only collected P10 million from the local power distributor last year, compared to P38 million in 2006. (MindaNews)