By Reicelene Joy N. Ignacio, June 4 2019; Business World

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THE Department of Finance (DoF) hopes to fully implement the electronic invoicing system by December 2022, resulting in administrative savings for the government and streamlining of tax processes, the Department of Finance said.

“Progress has been made in modernizing information technology services for taxpayers. However, further reforms are needed. The Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR), in partnership with the government of Korea, is set to complete the development of the e-invoicing system by end-2022,” DoF Assistant Secretary Antonio Joselito G. Lambino II said in a statement on Tuesday.

“This agenda requires a high level of commitment and the tax bureau has initiated foundational activities such as business process mapping starting this year,” Mr. Lambino added.

According to Mr. Lambino, the e-invoicing system will “result in administrative savings and make the bureau more resilient and easily adaptable to changes in policy and technology.”

Mr. Lambino noted that digitizing the invoice system will cut down on redundant data entries which are currently required in tax returns that already form part of other requirements in paying taxes.

Mr. Lambino said the current tax system has a tendency to “overemphasize controls and monitoring over the welfare of taxpayers and the overall ease and efficiency of compliance.”

He said that with the transformation, the DoF hopes to optimize business processes and improve the digital literacy of BIR’s workforce.

Earlier, Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) President Lee Mikyung said in a statement that South Korea will increase its assistance to the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).

“With the new set of policies presented by the Korean government, our volume of assistance to ASEAN countries will be increased by 2.8 times in 2022 compared to that of 2017. That means the volume of assistance to the Philippines will be naturally increased,” Mr. Lee said.

Mr. Lee said South Korea’s other initiatives for the Philippines include education, information and communications technology (ICT). — Reicelene Joy N. Ignacio