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The decline in the import value of oil products has negatively affected collection performance of the Bureau of Customs.

The decline in the import value of oil products has negatively affected collection performance of the Philippine Bureau of Customs.

The Bureau of Customs’ (BOC) revenue collection for the first eight months of 2015 increased 1.1% but was 13.7% behind target for the period, according to Customs Commissioner Alberto Lina.

In the September 21 hearing of the Lower House Ways and Means Committee, Lina said BOC collected P235.578 billion from January to August 2015, slightly higher than the P232.922 billion posted year-on-year. The latest figure is, however, less than the P273.062-billion target set by the Development Budget Coordinating Committee (DBCC).

Of the total, cash collections accounted for P230.586 billion, 14.6% less than the target of P269.937 billion. Tax expenditure fund was at P4.992 billion, 59.7% higher than the target of P3.125 billion.

Lina attributed the negative performance to a decline in the import value of oil products, which decreased 36% as a result of the 46.7% drop in weighted average price of crude and petroleum products.

Even with the increase in volume of oil imports by 20.7%, Lina said total collection for oil products dropped by P20.67 billion or 32.2% during the eight-month period.

Duties collected increased 20.2% from P28.850 billion to P34.676 billion while value-added tax collection dropped 2.1% due to the decline in collection of crude and petroleum products.

Lina noted that both commodities are non-dutiable due to the implementation of Executive Order No. 850, which levied zero rates for crude oil and refined petroleum products imported from Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN); and EO 890, which eliminated the 3% tariff rate on the same products imported from non-ASEAN, to address the tariff distortion.

Revenue foregone, or the difference in earnings or performance between what is achieved and what could have been achieved with the absence of specific fees, expenses or lost time, amounted to P244.147 billion for the eight-month period. The amount includes non-dutiable importations due to free trade agreements and other tax exemptions; warehousing which were re-exported; transhipment to Philippine Economic Zone Authority and other investment promotion agencies; and utilization of Tax Credit Certificate.

The DBCC has cut BOC’s collection target this year from P456.468 billion to P436.592 billion, in view of the recent decline in oil prices which affects BOC’s collection performance in both oil and non-oil commodities.

The revised target comes with a P426.592-billion cash component, 19.6% higher than the 2014 BOC actual cash collection of P356.815 billion.

Target collection per port was also revised reflecting an even rate of increase of 19.6% over their 2014 actual cash collections. – Roumina Pablo

Image courtesy of Feelart at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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