Zarate to DOF, BIR: Extend tax deadlines during community quarantine period
MANILA, Philippines – Bayan Muna party-list Rep. Carlos Zarate is urging the Department of Finance (DOF) and the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) to extend the tax deadlines as taxpayers are currently being forced to stay at home by the enhanced community quarantine.
Zarate, it is “ironic” for the DOF — which is part of the executive branch that declared the quarantine — not to move the deadline when the government is encouraging social distancing.
Previously, the DOF remained firm, saying that the April 15 deadline for the filing of the income tax returns will not be extended.
“It is very ironic that the Executive department issued and implemented a lockdown order but the Department of Finance is apparently defying it by insisting on the April 15 tax payment deadline,” Zarate said in a statement on Wednesday.
Zarate added that BIR’s collections would not be affected so much as it surpassed its collections last 2019. He warns that should the BIR and the DOF insist on the April 15 deadline, it may lead to bigger problems as COVID-19 may likely spread with taxpayers flocking to the bureau’s offices in trying to beat the deadline.
“The Department supposedly surpassed its collections for 2019, so it would not hurt if the tax collections are deferred by a month,” Zarate explained.
“Baka ang BIR at DOF pa ang maging rason ng mas malawak na pagkalat ng COVID-19 sa bansa, kung di nila i-eextend ang deadline ng pagbabayad ng buwis. Sana naman ay pakinggan nila ang panagawan ng mamamayan,” he added.
(The BIR and the DOF may be blamed for spreading COVID-19 of they are not willing to extend the payment dates for the payment of taxes. They should listen to the appeal of the taxpayers).
On Monday, President Rodrigo Duterte ordered that the entire Luzon be placed under an enhanced community quarantine, due to the increasing COVID-19 cases. As of Wednesday, there are 193 confirmed cases in the Philippines, 14 of which have died.
At least seven have recovered, said the Department of Health, while there are six patients who were discharged from the hospital and just continue with their quarantine at home.
COVID-19 is a respiratory disease caused by the novel coronavirus that first emerged in China’s city of Wuhan in Hubei province in late 2019.
The International Committee on Taxonomy of Viruses identified the novel coronavirus as SARS-CoV-2.
The coronavirus is a family of viruses with surfaces that have a crown-like appearance. The viruses are named after the spikes on their surfaces. Worldwide, over 193,000 COVID-19 cases have been recorded, while at least 7,865 have died.
Meanwhile, another 81,743 patients have recovered.
Edited by MUF
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.