CITY OF SAN FERNANDO -- The Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) Revenue Region IV here is now running after P1.9-billion in delinquent accounts for Central Luzon through its Arrears Management Team (AMT) formed this February to collect taxes from recent and decades-old delinquent accounts.

Revenue Region IV (RR-4) OIC Regional Director Conrado Lee told Sun.Star Pampanga that the AMT has in fact collected P6-million and another P54-million from two delinquent accounts.

Lee said that the AMT involves the fielding of seizure agents and staff, locating delinquent taxpayers and undertaking collection enforcement activities through streamlined procedures and policies culled from international best practices.

"The AMT is a means of exhausting all possible administrative actions that the BIR can undertake to collect delinquent accounts," Lee said.

BIR Commissioner Kim Jacinto-Henares started the AMT project last year to run after so-called cannot be located (CBL) taxpayers. The bulk of delinquent accounts come from CBL and from taxpayers who had died, or lost their businesses.

Lee said that the AMT was conceptualized in recognition of the increasing accounts receivables and delinquent accounts (ARs/DAs) of the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR), introducing a structure of timely, appropriate and cost effective collection actions and interventions in the management of arrears.

Lee added that the delinquent taxpayers would surely opt to settle their obligations rather than face court suits or the possibility of having their properties foreclosed.

There is almost P300 billion in tax debts all over the country that remains uncollected for decades, the bulk of which can no longer be recovered because the taxpayers who are classified as CBL, had either passed away or closed their businesses.