Many Policies Support People and Businesses to Deal with Difficulties

8:36:30 AM | 22/2/2021

The financial sector introduced many policies to support people and businesses to overcome difficulties caused by the Covid-19 pandemic last year. Our reporter has an interview with Mr. Dinh Tien Dung, Minister of Finance, to learn more about this matter. Le Hien reports.

What policies does the Ministry of Finance have to support taxes, fees, charges and land rents for people and enterprises to overcome difficulties in production and business to recover and develop the economy since the Covid-19 pandemic broke out at the beginning of 2020?

In the face of the Covid-19 pandemic, in order to support businesses and people to cope with the plague and fulfill its tasks on socio-economic development and the State budget in 2020 approved by the Party, the National Assembly, the Government and the Prime Minister, the Ministry of Finance actively studied and reported to competent authorities and issued policies on taxes, fees, charges and land rents within its jurisdiction to support people and enterprises to deal with hardships, revive business operations, and restart the economy. Typical policies included resolution on corporate income tax reduction for enterprises, cooperatives, non-business units and other organizations in 2020 and the decree on extended time limit for tax payment and land rental.

Besides, the Ministry of Finance chaired and coordinated with other ministries to review and study tax, fee and charge exemption and reduction and then submitted to the Government for promulgation of two decrees (on license fee and registration fee), issued 21 circulars and amended 31 effective circulars on fee and charge collection towards exempting or reducing taxes, fees and charges: a 70% reduction of business registration fees; a 67% reduction of corporate information disclosure fee, a 50% reduction of fee for granting an operation license of a credit institution; a 50% reduction of 20 out of 22 fees and charges in the securities sector.

Legal documents issued by the Ministry of Finance or submitted to competent authorities for promulgation all specified immediate application of supportive solutions without having to wait for reports on impact from enterprises. At the same time, according to the Law on Tax Administration and instructive documents, beneficiaries will self-determine and declare their payable tax amount, based on tax laws and their actual conditions, ensure publicity, transparency and convenience of application.

The total amount of tax and budget revenue extended, exempted or reduced according to policies issued by the end of November 2020 was VND100 trillion, estimated at nearly VND112 trillion for the whole year.

Without a doubt, placed in an overall landscape of business support solutions issued and enforced, the above tax, fee, charge and lent rent support solutions are considered to be timely, positive and effective, highly appreciated by the business community for the help for them to deal with hardships, stabilize operations and maintain growth.

Could you please tell us how administrative reform of the finance sector performed in 2020, especially in the fields related to the masses and enterprises?

Administering many fields directly relating to people and businesses, the Ministry of Finance has drastically conducted administrative reform over the past time, consistently and comprehensively adopted solutions, from institutional reform, administrative procedure reform and organizational reform to modern governance reform and wide application of information technology to facilitate people and enterprises to carry out administrative procedures.

Especially in 2020 with unprecedented difficulties and challenges caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, the Ministry of Finance actively carried out resolutions adopted by the National Assembly and the Government, proactively drafted and submitted many policies on public and business support to competent authorities. The outstanding results are listed below:

Regarding institutional reform, the Ministry of Finance focused on building and completing institutions and policies on financial and budget, improving the effectiveness and efficiency of State management, tightening financial discipline; and completed 100% of policy-making plans.

In the face of grave impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic on health, life, society and economy, the finance sector took the lead in proposing solutions on fiscal policies to the Government in response to hardships faced by enterprises in the fight against the pandemic.

Typical policies included the resolution on corporate income tax reduction in 2020 for enterprises, cooperatives, non-business units and other organizations; the decree on the extended time limit for tax and land rental payment; and the decision on land rent reduction in 2020 for entities affected by Covid-19.

In 21 circulars issued in 2020, a lot of fees and charges were slashed by the Ministry of Finance to facilitate and reduce costs for people and businesses: a 70% cut of business registration fee, a 67% cut of corporate information disclosure fee, a 50% reduction of license fee of a credit institution, a 50% reduction of 20 out of 22 fees and charges in the securities sector.

By the end of 2020, about VND123.6 trillion of taxes, land rentals, fees and charges was exempted or permitted for payment term extended.

Regarding the administrative procedure reform, the Ministry of Finance fulfilled all 180 administrative reform tasks as planned; abolished 39 administrative procedures; and amended, supplemented and replaced 60 administrative procedures in tax, customs, treasury, public property, accounting and auditing fields.

Regarding e-government construction, the ministry operated and connected the document management software to send documents electronically to 96 agencies and receive documents electronically from 356 agencies.

Up to now, all administrative procedures at the Ministry of Finance have been provided online, of which nearly 60% of online public services are provided at Category 3 and Category 4. At the same time, up to 51% of online public services of Category 3 and Category 4 of the Ministry of Finance have been integrated into the National Public Service Portal.

The ministry’s online public services provide more and more utilities to reduce time and costs while bringing satisfaction to organizations, individuals and businesses engaging in transactions with finance agencies.

The acceleration of online public services has facilitated a stronger administrative reform, enabling budget users to transact with the State Treasury around the clock with less time and fewer visits.

The Covid-19 pandemic is forecast to be still complicated in 2021. Can you tell us what major measures will be taken to both support businesses and ensure the budget revenue target in 2021?

To effectively and flexibly achieve the “dual goal” - preventing the Covid-19 pandemic, and recovering socioeconomic development in the new normal - while striving to accomplish State budget revenue tasks in 2021 decided by the National Assembly, in the spirit of the guideline "Solidarity, discipline, innovation, action, aspiration for development" and the focus on direction and administration in 2021 as per Government's Resolutions 01/NQ-CP and 02/NQ-CP, the finance sector will concentrate on major solutions as follows:

First, actively, closely and effectively manage fiscal policy, synchronously and flexibly coordinate with monetary policies and other macro policies to remove difficulties for the economy and support growth recovery.

The Prime Minister instructed the Ministry of Planning and Investment and the Ministry of Finance to study and propose policy solutions to support growth and sustain economic recovery in 2021, in which the fiscal policy solution plays an important role in reducing input costs, increasing accessible capital for businesses  by further reviewing, developing and implementing solutions and policies on taxes, fees and charges to facilitate enterprises and business households to recover and develop their business operations.

With the view that economic growth is the basis to nourish and grow, we believe that the above solutions on taxes, fees and charges may result in revenue shrinking in the short term. But as business performances of enterprises are stronger, the expanding economic size will increase the State budget revenue, not only offset the short-term decrease resulting from policy changes but also bring up the budget revenue, higher than the estimate.

So far, the above proposed policy solutions are being drafted by relevant ministries and agencies to submit to the Government for consideration and promulgation in the nearest time.

Second, the finance sector will work closely with central agencies, Party committees and local authorities to direct budget collection to ensure correct, sufficient and timely collection of arising revenues. The sector will strive to raise the State budget revenue by 3% from the estimate decided by the National Assembly, bring the ratio of the State budget to GDP to 15.5%; step up tax inspection; drastically handle tax arrears to lower the rate of tax arrears to less than 5% of total State budget revenue.

Third, the sector will drastically implement measures to promote disbursement of public investment capital in 2021 right from the beginning of the year to create a driving force for economic growth to reach or even surpass the set target. Accordingly, it will assign the responsibility of agency leaders to disbursement results; resolutely reduce and transfer capital of ministries, branches, localities and projects with slow disbursal rates to better-performing ones.

Fourth, it will speed up restructuring, equitization, divestment of State capital in enterprises, strengthen financial management, improve the performance of State-owned enterprises (SOEs) in 2021.

Fifth, the finance sector will strengthen financial and budgetary discipline in public service delivery; strengthen inspection, supervision, publicity and transparency of q management of the State budget, public property, land and natural resources; prevent smuggling and commercial fraud; strictly manage prices, markets, inflation and macroeconomic stability. It will continue to promote administrative reform and modernization, simplify administrative procedures, business conditions, and build e-government to better serve people and businesses.

Source: Vietnam Business Forum