Revision of Laos’ Law on Tax will raise more taxes, result in more efficient enforcement of the law and ensure better integration with domestic sectors and the region.
This was the message from Lao Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Somdy Duangdy when addressing the National Assembly on Monday.
Changes to the law are also expected to boost productivity and ensure the accurate and full collection of taxes. This will bolster the state’s budget and thus strengthen national socio-economic development.
Somdy explained the importance of the tax law and the role it had played in tax collection over past decades.
“The existing Law on Tax plays a significant role and is an important tool in tax management and revenue collection. Over time, it contributes to the implementation of national socio-economic development plans,” he said.
The most important goals of the current tax law are to attract more investment, ensure effective business operations, promote production, and improve integration with the regional and international communities, he said.
He added that the tax law had resulted in an impressive contribution to revenue collection in past years.
“In 2019 alone, the revenue collected from the tax and custom sectors contributed 29.1 per cent of domestic income, or 4.4 per cent of gross domestic product [GDP],” said Somdy, noting that this came from several categories of tax and customs duty.
He said the contribution of the current tax law was immeasurable but that revision of some chapters and articles was required to ensure it was more compatible with other domestic regulations and those of the region and the world.
“The existing law requires amendment because some of the content or messages in certain articles are not sufficiently specific and can provide loopholes for personal gain and other undesirable outcomes,” said Somdy.
He said amendment of the law would not only enable greater compatibility with international treaty partners but closer association with the business sector and revenue management.
It would also contribute to the overall reform of the finance sector until 2030 and the strategic development plan of the finance sector until 2025, he said.
VIENTIANE TIMES/ASIA NEWS NETWORK