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Conference rouses calls for better tax system

Government revenue raising was thrust into the limelight during the first day of this year’s International Business Chamber of Cambodia (IBC) Investment Conference.

More than 300 heads of industry and government, including Prime Minister Hun Sen, attended the event in Phnom Penh yesterday to discuss the Kingdom’s economic outlook.

While forecasting continued above-7-per-cent growth for Cambodia over the next five years, Ahmed Faisal, representative in Cambodia for the International Monetary Fund urged the government to increase domestic revenue.

“Improve government revenue mobilisation and expenditure. That is the proxy that investors are looking to as a key sign of quality reform,” Faisal said.

In Channy, CEO of the country’s largest bank, Acleda Bank, also called on the government to support the development of electronic tax payment systems to simplify tax compliance for taxpayers.

“More convenient tax payment options, such as the internet, in-branch, and even mobile need the government’s support,” Channy said.

Nguon Sokha, secretary of state for the Ministry of Economy and Finance admitted that the existing tax collection methods needed improvement, however, she pointed the finger equally at the private sector for meeting their own tax obligations.

“You can’t get a 100 per cent perfect system, but we’re working on it,” Sokha said. “It’s the private sectors role to contribute to the economy and they should do more to meet their tax obligations.”

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