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VN slashes tax procedures to save time

Update: September, 25/2014 - 09:06
An officer from the Deparment of Taxation in northern Yen Bai Province provides instruction on filing tax papers. Viet Nam has reduced the time needed to fill in tax forms from 1,050 hours to 872 hours in five years. — VNA/VNS Photo Hoang Hung.

DA NANG (VNS) — Viet Nam has taken drastic measures to reduce the time needed for companies to fill in tax forms and pay dues from 1,050 hours down to the current 872 hours in five years.

Chairwoman of the Viet Nam Tax Consultancy Association (VTCA), Nguyen Thi Cuc, said this in the central city of Da Nang yesterday at a workshop to discuss a draft decree to amend taxation policy.

Cuc, who is former Deputy Director General of the General Department of Taxation, said Vietnamese taxation agencies, ministries and departments must reduce the hours taken to complete tax procedures from about 171, similar to the ASEAN 6 (Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, the Philippines and Brunei).

She said this would improve Viet Nam's competitiveness.

"Viet Nam ranked 149th out of 189 nations in the Competitiveness Index and 185th in the Tax-Paying Index devised by the World Bank. The poor figure called for rapid change in administrative reforms and strong endeavours from customs, tax and businesses," she said.

She added that taxation procedure reform would boost transparency and competitiveness as well as create more favourable conditions for business.

Cuc said there was still many obstructions in the tax system and much overlapping by taxation and public security agencies, adding that digital tax had yet to be widely embraced.

Director of legal, regulatory and competition matters under the USAID's Governance for Inclusive Growth Programme Phan Vinh Quang, said the Government's Resolution 19 and the Finance Ministry's circular 119 (119/2014/TT-BTC) had a good impact on boosting the competitiveness for businesses.

"A survey of 400 businesses showed that the Finance Ministry's circular 119 helped enterprises save VND3 trillion (US$143 million) by streamlining administrative procedures and reducing tax barriers," Quang said.

"But Resolution 19, which will reduce the time to complete and pay tax each year down to 171 hours, would save VND11 trillion ($524 million)," he added. He said the World Bank suggested Viet Nam should promote e-tax declarations, simplify procedures and encourage businesses to self declare. — VNS

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