By Jun Ramirez
The Bureau of Immigration (BI) generated a record high income of more than P7 billion in 2018.
BI Commissioner Jaime Morente reported on Monday that, as of November 2018, the agency’s total revenue collections for the year already stood at P7.03 billion.
The collection is nearly P1.5- billion more than the P5.58 billion earned in 2017.
“We expect our total income in 2018 to surpass P7.5 billion in 2018 after all revenue from our main office and field and satellite offices for December are added to the 11-month collection figure,” Morente said.
The BI Chief proudly noted that the BI’s annual revenue collections have steadily jumped to record levels over the last six years.
He said that “from only P2.7 billion in 2012, our yearly income has increased four-fold, thanks to the aggressive efforts of the government in marketing the Philippines as a prime tourist and investment destination to the international community.”
Morente attributed last year’s phenomenal rise in immigration fee collections to the success of President Rodrigo Duterte’s government in initiating reforms and programs that attracted many foreigners to visit and do business in the country.
Morente likewise cited the continuing efforts of the BI to modernize its facilities, simplify its procedures and improve its frontline operations that resulted in the delivery of fast and efficient service to the transacting public.
“We have been strictly monitoring our collections not only in the main office but in our sub-port offices as well to ensure that all our revenues are remitted to the government coffers,” said BI finance chief Judith Ferrera.
Ferrera said fees paid by foreigners, who avail of the Bureau’s services, are always fully accounted for due to the computerization of the BI’s official receipt and order of payment slip issuance system.