VERA FILES FACT CHECK: FB post shows INACCURATE tax collection data during PNoy’s term

A graphic about increased tax collection under the term of the late President Benigno Aquino III posted on July 15 by a Facebook page cited inaccurate data.

Tax collection did reach the P1-trillion mark for the first time in Philippine history under Aquino, as FB page Change Scamming said. Contrary to its claim, this happened in 2012, not 2013.

A total of P1.06 trillion in taxes was collected by the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) in 2012, based on the agency’s official collection statistics. It rose to P1.22 trillion in 2013.

The FB page also cited two wrong figures on tax collection in 2008 and 2015, missing the mark by billions.

That the highest revenue collected prior to 2012 was “P778.6 billion” in 2008 is incorrect. The infographic got the year right, but the amount was P780.06 billion.

In 2015, the BIR’s total revenue collection was P1.44 trillion, not P1.5 trillion.

The misleading infographic was published three days after credit rating company Fitch Ratings downgraded its outlook on the Philippine economy from “stable” to “negative,” citing the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and its effects on policy-making and economic output.

It got 1,100 reactions, 132 comments, and 579 shares, and could have reached 1.3 million people, according to social media monitoring tool CrowdTangle.

Change Scamming, which publishes posts critical of the Duterte administration, was created in April 2010.

(Editor's Note: VERA Files has partnered with Facebook to fight the spread of disinformation. Find out more about this partnership and our methodology.)


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Founded in March 2008, VERA Files is published by veteran Filipino journalists taking a deeper look into current Philippine issues. Vera is Latin for “true.”

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