Tax authorities use technology to accelerate delivery of refunds

October 07, 2023 - 02:26
Fiscal revenues grossed VNĐ1.22 quadrillion (US$50.2 billion) in the first nine months of 2023, against fiscal expenditures of VNĐ1.24 quadrillion ($50.8 billion).
Workers assemble a wooden chair in a factory in Tuyên Quang Province. Tax authorities have disbursed VNĐ2 trillion in tax refunds to timber companies recently. — VNA/VNS Photo Vũ Sinh

HÀ NỘI — Tax authorities will employ digital technology to process tax returns, accelerating the delivery of refunds in the fourth quarter of 2023.

That remark was made by Mai Sơn, Deputy Director-General of the General Department of Taxation, at a press conference by the Ministry of Finance on Thursday.

Sơn said the delivery of tax refunds was sluggish over the past few years because tax papers had been processed manually. But everything would change in the fourth quarter as the department was working on a scheme to use cutting-edge technology to improve efficiency.

Regarding Samsung Electronics HCMC CE Complex, which claimed a tax refund of over VNĐ500 billion (US$24 million) back to the days it hadn't transitioned to an export-processing enterprise, he said the claim was under review and would be approved once the step is completed.

Regarding its other claim for a tax refund of over VNĐ400 billion ($20 million), arising between June 2021 and December 2022, he said his department had sent the case to the General Department of Customs for review because the case falls within the agency's competence.

Crypto concerns

Hoàng Văn Thu, Vice Chairman of the State Securities Commission of Vietnam, said it had never been an easy task to develop a legal framework for cryptocurrency in Việt Nam because such a form of money is new and largely in the crosshairs of cybercriminals.

He called for the formation of a working group to learn from other countries' legislations and lay the legal groundwork for the "currency" in the country.

"We need to form an inter-minitrial working group to study cryptocurrency and weigh up the possibility of developing a legal framework for it," said Thu.

Legally, it is invalid to trade cryptocurrency in Việt Nam because the "currency" has not been recognised as an "asset" in the country.

Portal upgrade

Trần Thị Huệ, Deputy Director of the Vietnam State Treasury, said her agency was working on a scheme to upgrade its portal of public services in 2024 and connect it to the portals of the Ministry of Planning and Investment and other State agencies.

Once the connection takes shape, it would allow the sharing of digitalised dossiers between ministries and discourage the use of paper-based dossiers, thereby accelerating the delivery of public investment.

Trương Bá Tuấn, Deputy Director of the Department of the Tax Policies, Fees and Charges Supervisory Authority, said the new environmental fees on emissions were not overlapping with other environmental fees because each serves a different purpose.

According to the Ministry of Finance, fiscal revenues grossed VNĐ1.22 quadrillion ($50.2 billion) in the first nine months of 2023, against fiscal expenditures of VNĐ1.24 quadrillion ($50.8 billion).

Imports and exports totalled $461.1 billion by mid-September, down 11.9 per cent year-on-year. The falling import of dutiable goods has caused a loss of VNĐ34 trillion ($1.4 billion) to the State budget.

About VNĐ243.4 trillion ($10 billion) of public bonds were issued by September 26 with an average term of 12.44 years and an annual coupon rate of 3.38 per cent. In the private sector, 51 enterprises issued VNĐ123 trillion ($5 billion) of corporate bonds by mid-September.

About VNĐ152.5 trillion ($6.3 billion) has been allocated by late September for fiscal efforts to support the economy, of which VNĐ49.6 trillion goes to tax cuts and fee reductions and VNĐ102.9 trillion to tax and fee deadline extensions. — VNS