MANILA – The Bureau of Customs (BOC) on Monday admitted that the agency will no longer be able to hit its full-year collections goal due to a “major headway made in reducing smuggling.”
BOC Commissioner John Philip P. Sevilla also added that they will push for reforms next year in order to boost the revenue collections and at the same time stop corrupt practices of some importers.
During a press conference, Sevilla noted that while BOC will not meet the P408.1 billion target, the growth can be maintained under the year ends.
Data showed that BOC’s collection from January to November of this year increased by 17.8 percent or P331.2 billion from P281.1 billion in the same period last year. However, the collections from January to November are really below the agency’s goal by 11.9 percent.
BOC data showed that the January-to-November collections increased by 17.8 percent to P331.2 billion from P281.1 billion in the same 11-month period in 2013. The collections during the first 11 months, however, were 11.9-percent below the target of P376.1 billion for the period.
In November of this year, collections increased by 10.5 percent or P31.2 billion from the same month last year with P28.2 billion. However, the said amount is still 16. Percent lower that the target of P37.3 billion.
Moreover, the goal of P456 billion for next year may also be difficult to reach because “the 2015 target is impractical and unrealistic, especially with oil prices down,” according to Sevilla.
Despite these, Sevilla noted that the agency was able to lessen the problem of smuggling in the country.
“I believe we have stopped rice smuggling,” said Sevilla referring to the record that the BOC posted with regard to auctions, seizures, and filed cases against suspected rice smugglers.
Sevilla also mentioned that there has been a “significant reduction in the smuggling of fuel.”
“If you ask oil companies, they would not attribute the higher volumes to higher consumption. We are registering higher volumes because those shipments being smuggled before are now going in through legal channels,” explained Sevilla.