Mining in and oil exploration companies contributed P52.7 billion to government coffers in 2012 according to the Philippine Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (PH-EITI).
The amount is 50 percent higher than its earlier estimate of P35.2 billion.
PH-EITI based the amount on its 18-month study of the money flow between government and the extractive industries, which include oil, gas and metallic mining companies.
The group said it adjusted the figures after studying the accounting policies of both the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) and the Department of Energy (DoE).
“Up until a procedural change in 2012, oil and gas corporations engaged in petroleum and natural gas extraction remitted corporate income tax as part of government share to the DOE. As such, an amount of P17 billion was initially thought of as a repeat declaration,” it said.
The group noted that a subsequent trace of the amount by DOE and the PH-EITI Independent Administrator, Isla Lipana & Co., proved that the amount was not a matter of double-counting, but was, in fact, an actual and separate BIR payment from oil and gas companies.
“As such, PH-EITI is adjusting the under-declared amount of oil and gas contributions to P46.5 billion from the original figure of P29.01 billion,” it said.
“I view this as part of our learning curve, and highlights the best reason why we need EITI in the country. We get a lot of data from all sources, but unless this is properly processed and compiled, it can often lead to a lot of confusion and unintentional misimpressions,” Finance Assistant Secretary Ma. Teresa Habitan, who is also the focal person for PH-EITI, said.
“It is an important part of our thrust for transparency that the correct data on the revenues of government from the upstream oil and gas industry be disseminated to the public at the soonest possible time. We also hope this will avert more inconsistencies about information released to other government branches, such as the Senate, Congress, and of course, DOE and BIR,” said Sebastian Quinones Jr., president of Philippine Petroleum Association of the Upstream Industry Inc.