HA NOI (VNS)— Automobile manufacturers and experts have affirmed that taxes and fees need to be changed to stimulate the automobile industry and the sluggish car sales in Viet Nam.
|Korean Kia cars roll along the assembly line in Chu Lai-Truong Hai automobile prod-uction complex in central coastal Quang Nam Province. — VNA/VNS Photo Tran Tinh
Speaking at a seminar on Thursday, the Viet Nam Automobile Manufacturers' Association (VAMA) chairman Laurent Charpentier said 10 years ago Viet Nam's automobile industry made great contribution to the country's economy.
Now the volume of cars being sold had turned down. He said in the first eight months of this year, car sales fell to 64,520 units, a year-on-year decrease of 33 per cent.
Charpentier attributed the reduction to the economic downturn and taxes and fees that influenced consumer psychology.
Pham Anh Tuan, deputy director of the Ministry of Industry and Trade's Heavy Industry Department, said Viet Nam was the only ASEAN country facing a downturn in the automobile industry. Tuan said continually changing taxes made the local car market fluctuate strongly.
Tuan said the Viet Nam automobile market still had great potential but it needed stable long-term policies to develop, such as policies on support industries, taxes and fees and infrastructure development.
At the seminar, Do Huu Hao, former deputy minister of the Ministry of Industry and Trade, affirmed that in the following decades, no transport means could totally replace cars. The seminar was a chance for economists, policy makers, and associations to propose solutions to support the domestic auto industry.
Bui Ngoc Huyen, general director of Xuan Kien Auto JSC (Vinaxuki), blamed the changeable tax and fees policies on the poor vision of policy makers. Huyen said Viet Nam had professional skills and materials to produce cars but inappropriate policies had hindered development of the automobile industry.
Huyen also said support industries has fallen short of expectation and needed backing.
Nguyen Manh Hung, deputy chairman of the Viet Nam Standards and Consumers Association (VINASTAS), said cars were not considered a luxury nowadays. Taxes and fees needed to be stable to maintain consumer interest, he said.
Nguyen Khanh Toan, from the VAMA, said authorised agencies needed to review taxes and fees. Cars were currently subject to five kinds of tax and nine kinds of fees. Therefore, the valued added tax should be slashed from 10 per cent to 5 per cent, corporate income tax should be cut to 20 per cent from 25 per cent and special consumption taxes and import taxes should be balanced with international and regional countries.
Tran Tan Trung, general director of Lien A International JSC, said car ownership registration fees were raised 20 per cent in Ha Noi, 15 per cent in HCM City and 10 per cent in other cities. That needed to be re-adjusted to avoid tax fraud as cars from Ha Noi and HCM City were being registered in neighbouring cities
Do Huu Hao said developing a sustainable automobile industry required consistent policies. — VNS