Viet Nam Chamber of Commerce and Industry vice president Pham Gia Tuc spoke to Hai Quan (Customs) newspaper about the annual dialogue between customs officials and enterprises.
The main theme of the dialogue this year will be administrative reforms in customs and tax policies. Can you tell us more about what will be covered?
A big difference between the coming dialogue and previous ones is that the dialogue this year will not be held in a single location but in several venues. The chamber, the General Department of Customs and the General Department of Taxation will jointly host the dialogues at different levels for provincial/municipal, regional and commodity sectors. For instance, in the Cuu Long [Mekong] Delta region, where many seafood enterprises are located, we will hold a dialogue on taxes and customs procedures relating to that industry.
In major economic centres like southern Binh Duong Province, the central city of Da Nang or the northern port city of Hai Phong, the chamber will co-ordinate with local tax and customs offices to host dialogues with enterprises there.
In these conferences, local tax and customs offices will try to show enterprises how to solve problems they are facing when going through customs or in import and export operations.
This year we also plan to hold dialogues in Ha Noi and HCM City. The main objective in holding these two events will be to listen to enterprises' comments and suggestions on regulations being drafted by the taxation and customs offices before they are submitted for approval by the Government and the National Assembly. We also want to hear their comments on existing customs procedures, including e-customs and the one-door customs policy among ASEAN nations.
How have enterprises responded to the new arrangement?
First of all I just want to say that, in the past few years, the customs and tax sections have tried to address queries or concerns from enterprises even before the dialogues were held. This has been acknowledged by enterprise resprentatives themselves, who have been appreciative that prompt and helpful answers were given.
The way we have organised the dialogues this year is somewhat different from the past and we informed enterprises about the changes early this year. They were appreciative of our proposal to hold dialogues at sub-department levels. With this arrangement, we hope specific questions will be satisfactorily addressed and questions related to policies or macro issues will be sent to higher authorities to resolve.
What's your opinion about the administrative reforms undertaken by customs and tax sectors?
I highly appreciates the great efforts and achievements of the customs and tax sectors. The two sectors have set bright examples for others to follow in public administration reform. The enterprises community hopes that the two sectors will continue to be pacesetters in reform, particularly in the application of new technology, including e-customs. — VNS