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SoCot nets P31-M in mining, quarry taxes in 2018
GENERAL SANTOS CITY — The provincial government of South Cotabato recorded an “all-time high” of PHP31 million in mining and quarry tax revenues last year as the area’s small-scale mining industry continued to thrive.
Siegfried Flaviano, head of the Provincial Environment Management Office (PEMO), said Monday the total collections in 2017 was higher by around 9 million when compared to the PHP21.6 million in the previous year.
Flaviano said the mining and quarry tax collection last year was the highest since the local government started implementing reforms on small-scale mining operations in 2010, the Philippine News Agency reported.
“It was also considered as among the biggest collections in Region 12 (Soccsksargen) for the period,” Flaviano said in a statement.
He said their average monthly collection in 2018 increased to PHP2.58 million from around PHP1.8 million in 2017.
With the increase in tax collection, the provincial government’s share has increased to nearly PHP12 million from PHP8.3 million in the previous year.
Taxes and fees under mining and quarry cover sand and gravel tax; mining tax; mining permit fee; ore transport fee; occupational mining tax; verification fee; filing fee; permit fee; projection fee; processing fee; fines/penalties/surcharges; and miscellaneous (delivery receipts).
Flaviano attributed the increase in mining and quarry tax collections to the sustained monitoring on the operations of mine tunnels, processing plants, and transport of mineral ores in the area.
The official said they also implemented stricter regulations on mining operations, especially those based in the gold rush villages of Kematu and Desawo, in Tboli.
In November, South Cotabato Gov. Daisy Avance-Fuentes issued a recall order on all small-scale mining contracts temporarily issued since January.
Fuentes, the co-chair of the Provincial Mining Regulatory Board, said the move was due to the non-compliance of local mining associations to the operational requirements set in the revised implementing rules and regulations of Republic Act 7076 or the People’s Small Scale Mining Act.
“Despite the overwhelming challenges and changes in national policies, we were still able to improve compliance monitoring especially on the payment of taxes and fees from extractive industries,” Flaviano said.