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Last updateSat, 24 Aug 2019 12am

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    Thursday, August 22, 2019-11:02:53P.M.

     

     

     

     

     

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NMI excise tax collections up $5 million, official says

THE CNMI excise tax collections have increased by $5 million compared to the same period in the previous fiscal year, Finance Secretary David DLG Atalig said.

In an interview on Tuesday, he said from Oct. 2018 to July 2019, the Division of Customs recorded about $38 million in excise tax collections compared to about $33 million in the same period in the previous fiscal year.

David Deleon Guerrero Atalig

Atalig noted that in fiscal year 2018, the CNMI’s excise tax collections hit $40.1 million. For FY 2019, he added, “we anticipate collections of $44 million.”

This, he said, “shows the great work our Division of Customs has done in ensuring that the excise tax is collected in a timely manner.”

He said CNMI Customs personnel are also “doing a great job in ensuring we prevent unwanted goods and prohibited items such as illegal drugs and other harmful products from entering our Commonwealth.”

Custom Director Jose Mafnas attributed the increase in excise tax collections to “some changes in the process.” These include improved inspections and a focus on high-risk imports.

Rep. Ralph N. Yumul, acting chairman of House Ways and Means Committee, applauded the Division of Customs for a job well done, saying that an increase in excise tax collections is welcome news to everyone and may indicate that the economy is slowly recovering.

The next task is a similar aggressive collection of business gross revenue taxes on the part of the Division of Revenue and Taxation, Yumul said.

Meanwhile, he added, “we still have to be mindful of our obligations and be careful with our expenditures.”