President Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. has encouraged the public to pay the "correct amount" of taxes on time, saying it is crucial to the country's economic recovery.
"I encourage the public to pay the correct amount of taxes on time to support the country’s economic recovery and expansion so critical in this time," Marcos said in his speech at the kick-off ceremony of the national tax campaign on Tuesday, Feb. 7.
Marcos expressed his confidence towards tax payers that they will continue to "cooperate, collaborate, and coordinate with the government" in terms of improving the experience of the country's collection system.
He assured them that all tax collected by the government will be used to "improve the lives of Filipinos."
"est assured that this government will remain committed to managing and utilizing these contributions for the benefit of the country and for every Filipino. And also we will ensure that every peso of taxes paid will become an investment in uplifting the quality of lives of every Juan and Juana," Marcos said.
Gain the public's confidence
In his speech, the President also committed to support the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) in its goal towards digitalization of its processes and challenged them to further gain the confidence of the public in the country's tax system.
"I also furthermore challenge the men and women of the BIR to work towards further gaining the confidence of the public in the tax system by upholding the highest standards of integrity, professionalism, and competence in the performance of your duties," Marcos said.
"I assure the BIR that this administration will always give its support in your aspiration of developing a country that is conducive for employment opportunities, financial investments, and institution-building," he added.
The chief executive also acknowledged BIR’s accomplishments last year, particularly the intensified implementation of the Run After Tax Evaders (RATE), which resulted in the filing of 15 cases with the Department of Justice (DOJ) amounting to P5.1 billion in tax liability.
This is in addition to 38 cases filed with the Court of Tax Appeals (CA) amounting to an estimated P5.32 billion in estimated tax liability.
And just recently, 74 criminal complaints for tax evasion were filed before the DOJ, with about P3.58 billion in tax liability.
Through the agency’s Oplan Kandado program, the BIR has brought more than P550 million to the government coffers, the President said.
The BIR has likewise broadened the country’s tax base through the aggressive Tax Compliance Drive, which enabled it to collect more than P250 million in 2022, doubling the collection compared with the previous year.
This growth, he said, is a remarkable increase -- 13 percent higher than the BIR’s own target of 3 percent for the year and covered around 5.2 million business taxpayers.
Marcos also commended the BIR for harnessing the power of modern technology to accomplish more efficient, effective and reliable tax collections through the Digitalization Transformation or DX Program.
This includes the implementation of the Internal Revenue Integrated System; one-time transaction or the eONETT system; Interactive chatbot “Revie”; automated system for Monitoring and Managing Administrative Cases; and an Enhanced Internal Revenue Stamps Integrated System for tobacco products, alcohol and sweetened beverages.
“As we move forward to the future, the importance of utilizing modern and updated technology to ensure a more tax collection becomes absolutely imperative. It is my hope that the Bureau will continue its commitment to pursuing and upgrading its digitalization programs,” the President said.