Philippine Tax evaders
MANILA (Reuters) - The Philippines is stepping up efforts to crack down on tax evasion to bring budget revenues back on track and will jail those convicted, President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo said on Saturday.Did Reuters or its reporter Raju Gopalakrishnan ever hear of spell check? Check out the words in bold.
The nation's main tax agencies are estimated to have collected 53 billion pesos ($1.16 billion) less than planned in the first half of the year, and the government's goal of keeping the full-year fiscal deficit within 63 billion pesos is seriously in doubt.
"We have to recognise the fact that there are taxes out there that haven't been collected," Arroyo told Reuters in an interview.
"And that is where we are putting our renewed effort, on using modernisation and technology to expand our reach, also cracking down on corruption, and enforcing compliance by tax cheats."
She said technology, for instance, will help develop software to compare a database on car owners with the taxes they have paid.
The authorities will also intensify company audits to ensure they are not evading customs duties on imports. Most importantly, Arroyo said, she had asked the Bureau of Customs and the Bureau of Internal Revenue to secure the conviction of evaders and make sure that they end up serving jail terms.
"We cannot just keep filing a case every week," she said. "I have said why not look at the cases that you have already filed and make them strong and make them stick and get convictions. And that is now the direction."
That's a great idea President Arroyo. You can start by prosecuting all the Philippine politicians and other government officials who steal taxpayer money and don't report it on their taxes. Oops then you President Arroyo may turn up going to jail too. Wouldn't that be ironic?
Philippine politicians talking about cracking down on tax evasion. It's like Osama Bin Laden talking about how to make Washington DC safer from terrorists.
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