Philippines Wants To Adopt South Korea’s High-Tech Tax Administration Systems

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A logo of Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (Central Bank of the Philippines) is seen at their main building in Manila, Philippines March 23, 2016. (Photo: REUTERS/Romeo Ranoco/File Photo)

The Philippines is looking to strengthen its ties with South Korea (SoKor) by adopting the country's technology-based tax systems, particularly the electronic invoicing program. The Philippine tax administration has already received assistance from its counterpart.

According to The Manila Times, Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III said on Tuesday that the Philippines wants to further pursue economic relations with S. Korea. The ultimate goal is to promote the technologies that South Korean tax systems use in Philippine tax processes.

The Philippines has been in search of technologies that should improve the country's taxation processes and it found South Korea's systems the best yet. "We looked around the world and we found that the best electronic invoicing program is in [South] Korea. We wish to adopt it here," Dominguez said.

South Korea has already started assisting the Philippines' Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) in its efforts to promote digital innovations in various tax-related tasks and transactions. This time, SK's electronic invoicing program will be adopted by the bureau first before additional programs will be developed under the PH-SK partnership.

Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) chief Lee Mikyung noted that the South Korean government has been working closely with the Malacanang to develop ties in various sectors including information and communications technology (ICT).

Seoul has also agreed to promote the ASEAN Higher Education Initiative wherein Filipino college students will travel to South Korea to study under the education ministry's top-notch ICT programs.

Since this year marks the 70th anniversary of diplomatic ties between SK and the Philippines, Dominguez heaped praises on the assistance that Seoul has provided for the country's efforts in line with a digitally-inclined economy starting with tax administration.

Lee, for his part in the celebratory events, was quoted as saying that the SoKor government is expecting to increase its support for the Philippines through time. He cited Seoul's plan of increasing its ASEAN assistance by 2.8 times within three years.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in has previously acknowledged that the ASEAN region plays a key role in driving the global economy. This realization made him implement reforms to help improve the ICT sectors of ASEAN nations, including that of the Philippine islands.

According to Lee, his government is particularly looking to assist the Filipino people in the government's scheme of transitioning into an inclusive economy. Through President Moon's new policies, Seoul can extend its assistance for ASEAN countries not just in ICT but potentially for other sectors that it could be of help.

Dominguez noted that he has received a briefing from Lee regarding the new policies that Moon approved for boosting the ICT segments of ASEAN nations.

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