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Saturday, March 2, 2024

Higher tax collection reduced 9-month budget deficit to P1t

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The government’s budget deficit eased in September to P179.8 billion from P180.9 billion a year ago as the 24.8-percent increase in revenue collection outpaced the 13.6-percent expansion in expenditures, the Bureau of the Treasury said Wednesday.

This brought the cumulative fiscal deficit in nine months to P1.0 trillion, down by 11.09 percent or P126.3 billion from a year ago. It was also 20.47 percent or P260.6 billion behind the year-to-date programmed deficit of P1.3 trillion.

Government expenditures in the first nine months reached P3.7 trillion, outperforming the previous year’s level by 8.71 percent or P293.9 billion, but were behind the nine-month program by 1.86 percent or P69.7 billion.

“This was driven mainly by higher capital expenditures, national tax allotment of LGUs and interest payments, alongside the subsidy releases to the Philhealth for the National Health Insurance Program,” the Treasury said in a statement.

Data also showed that revenues jumped to P288.8 billion in September, as both tax and non-tax collections picked up. Revenues in the nine-month period hit P2.7 trillion, accounting for 80 percent of the full-year program and exceeding the previous year’s performance by 18.79 percent or P420.3 billion. The tally was also 7.74 percent or P190.9 billion higher than the targeted collection.

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Tax collections made up P2.4 trillion (90 percent) of total revenues with the remaining 10 percent or P272.6 billion coming from non-tax sources.

The Bureau of Internal Revenue collected P173.6 billion in September, after deducting the P877.0 million tax refund. This was 12.58 percent or P19.4 billion higher than last year’s level.

BIR collections in the nine-month period amounted to P1.7 trillion, up by 12.29 percent or nearly P190 billion from a year earlier. This accounted for 72 percent of the full-year target but was 1.99 percent or P35.2 billion short of the P1.8-trillion cumulative goal.

Collections by the Bureau of Customs jumped 37.72 percent or P21.7 billion in September to P79.3 billion from last year’s P57.6 billion. This resulted in a cumulative uptake of P638.5 billion in the nine-month period, higher by 36 percent or P168.6 billion than its performance a year ago and P96.3 billion or 17.76 percent above the P542.2-billion target.

The Bureau of the Treasury generated P7.3 billion in revenue in September, 30.29 percent or P1.7 billion higher than a year ago.

“The year-on-year improvement resulted mainly from higher national government share from PAGCOR profit, BTr managed funds and interest on NG deposits,” the Treasury said.

Cumulative income of BTr as of end-September hit P129.7 billion, up from P105.5 billion a year ago and more than double the P58.6 billion programmed for the period. This also exceeded the P61.2-billion original 2022 full-year program by P68.5 billion.

Collections from other offices including non-tax including privatization proceeds and fees and charges, amounted to P28.2 billion in September, or more than twice the revenue recorded in the same month last year. This included the remittance of the P7.3 billion unutilized unconditional cash transfer program funds by the DSWD and the PCSO’s P2.6-billion mandatory contribution to Universal Health Care.

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