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MANILA The city government of Makati has posted a total of PHP8 billion in revenue collection from local sources in January of this year, which was already 56 percent of the fullyear target.

With major initiatives of the city now well underway or set for implementation this year, increased revenue collection is certainly welcome news to us. It means we can confidently proceed with our plans for the year, Mayor Abby Binay said in a statement Wednesday.

The mayor said the increased revenue collections can be attributed to more efficient processes at City Hall as well as to renewed investor confidence.

Aside from our proactive collection efforts, we can credit our healthy revenue growth to improved processes at City Hall which have made transactions more convenient and transparent, thus inspiring stronger investor confidence, the lady mayor said.

Acting City Treasurer Jesusa Cuneta cited an 8percent increase in collection over the same period last year from locallysourced revenues, which include business tax, real property tax, fees and charges, and economic enterprises.

Records of the city Business Permit Office (BPO) show an increase in new business registrants and renewed business permits in the first month of the year compared to January last year. From 125, the number of new businesses grew to 243, while renewed permits rose from 29,225 to 31,311. The combined investment capital of new businesses has been estimated at PHP1.5 billion.

Based on the Treasurer's report, business tax earned the highest revenue with PHP4.1 billion (46 percent attainment rate), which is seven percent higher than collection in January 2017. The next highest income came from real property tax with almost PHP3.6 billion (78 percent attainment rate), showing a nine percent increase versus last year.

Other local sources include fees and charges with PHP313.2 million or 49 percent of target, and nine percent higher, and economic enterprises with P15.8 million or seven percent of target, and 33 percent higher than last year.

Meanwhile, the city has earned PHP27.7 million in interest income or 17 percent of target, and received PHP94.8 million or 9 percent of its estimated Internal Revenue Allotment (IRA) from the national government. Unlike many local government units, Makati is not dependent on the IRA.

Total revenue collections of the city as of January from both local and external sources amounted to PHP8.12 billion, or 52 percent of gross revenue target for the year.

Meanwhile, the Treasurer's report also showed the city to be on track with the higher revenue targets set by the Bureau of Local Government Finance (BLGF) under the Department of Finance.

Based on the BLGF performance target for Makati for fiscal year 2018, the city has attained 47 percent of total estimated income from local sources for the year as of January 31. Collections from realty tax reached 53 percent of target, followed by business tax at 45 percent attainment rate.

In 2017, the city posted a twodigit increase in revenue collections for the first time in about 12 years. Its gross revenue collections reached PHP16.97 billion or 116 percent of its fullyear target and 12 percent more than the 2016 collections. Business tax remained the top revenue source with PHP8.22 billion followed by real property tax with PHP6.22 billion, posting an increase of 10 percent and 15 percent, respectively.

Source: Philippine News Agency