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CDO business bleeds as ‘quarantine’ stays

CAGAYAN de Oro City–Business in this premier capital of Northern Mindanao is bleeding to death as the quarantine period continues, a city executive said Tuesday.

City Councilor George Goking said that the COVID-19 pandemic has forced the city to adopt measures to prevent its spread through quarantine, travel restriction, and early evening curfew forcing some businesses to shut down.

Goking, the chair of the city council’s ways and means, trade, commerce and industry, said that the city’s projected income of P 7.5 billion by the end of December 2020 is impossible to attain.

“Had it not for the COVID-19 pandemic, the projected income could likely be attained because the city has already collected more than P 2 billion in June 2020,” Goking said.

The projected annual revenue collected is used for the city’s general fund, infrastructure projects, and operational expenses.

He said that the city’s approved annual budget is based on the projected revenue collection of business and realty taxes.

“The city’s financial coffers is draining and the fear of surviving under a prolonged quarantine and a gloomy business climate is getting high,” he said.

He said that the quarantine imposed to prevent the spread of the corona virus has greatly affected the business climate in the city.

According to Goking, the lockdown and the closure of some 200 business firms in the city, was the culprit in the decline of tax collection here.

He said that the city government already extended the payment of business and realty taxes twice since the deadline in January 2020.

The extension in the payment of taxes was in response to the clamor of the businessmen, Goking said.

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