Tax avoidance leaves $3.4 bln hole in national budget

By Hoai Thu, Bui Hong Nhung   May 27, 2016 | 12:18 am PT
Vietnam failed to collect VND76 trillion ($3.4 billion) in taxes during the first four months of this year, of which Hanoi’s bill added up to more than 30 percent of the figure, according to the General Department of Taxation under the Ministry of Finance.

Data from the department showed that the country’s tax debt increased by 4.3 percent against the same period last year, with overdue debts that are late by more than 90 days making up 48.3 percent.

Besides Hanoi, other provinces with high tax debts included Binh Duong ($90 million), Dong Nai (($85 million) and Da Nang ($76 million).

Tax authorities explained that many local businesses have faced financial difficulties or even gone bankrupt, so it was impossible for them to pay their taxes. Many people also deliberately refused to pay their taxes on time while some did not provide detailed information about their bank accounts.

The department said it plans to cooperate with local banks to collect the arrears. Specifically, tax authorities will send information about tax debts to banks where taxpayers have accounts. The banks will then automatically deduct money from the accounts to pay for the owner’s tax debt.

To ensure this money reaches the state budget, the department has instructed 13 provinces to collect at least VND19.5 trillion ($874 million), including VND6.7 trillion ($300 million) from Hanoi and VND7 trillion ($313 million) from Ho Chi Minh City.

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