VCN – A company imported a cruise ship worth more than VND 7 billion and paid taxes of more than VND 4.6 billion. After nearly 2 years, the company submitted its business registration certificate and proposed the customs authority pay a special consumption tax (SCT) refund of more than VND 2.6 billion.
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A cruise ship worth more than VND 7 billion
According to Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC) Customs Department, the unit is facing a problem in SCT refund for the imported cruise ship in change of use purposes.
Specifically, Yacht T. Co., Ltd. registered customs declaration No. 101544802700 / A11 on 7/8/2017 to import one cruise ship brand Beneteau Gran Turismo, using two Volvo engine, produced in 2017, model 2018 (new 100%) with declared value of €273,576.86 (more than VND 7 billion). Total tax payable was over VND 4.6 billion, of which import tax was over VND 803 million; SCT was over VND 2.6 billion and VAT was more than VND 1.4 billion.
At the registration of the customs declaration, the company presented a certificate of business registration for a limited liability company with two or more members (first registration on March 16, 2017). The certificate did not state the business function and the company did not present a written commitment to use the imported cruise ship for the transport of goods and passengers and tourists and was not committed to submitting a circulation permit issued by a competent authority after being issued.
However, nearly two years after the shipment was cleared, the company has recently sent a written request to the HCMC Customs Department for adding a certificate of business registration (registration for the first time change on March 28, 2018 - after the import of the cruise ship) which shows the function of business in transportation of goods, passengers and tourists; a registration certificate of inland waterway vehicle No. 11072 / ĐK issued by HCMC Department of Transportation on December 1, 2017; certificate of technical safety and environment protection for inland water vehicle No. 08324/18V50 issued by Registry Branch 6 - Registry Department on December 24, 2018; a certificate of passenger ship No. 2091 / GP-SGTVT issued by HCMC Department of Transportation on June 17, 2019 and proposed the Customs authority pay a SCT refund of over VND 2.6 billion .
Will the SCT be refunded?
According to Clause 1, Article 1 of Government’s Decree No. 14/2019 / ND-CP dated February 1, 2019 amending and supplementing Clause 3, Article 3 of Decree No. 108/2015 / ND-CP dated October 28, 2015, detailing and guiding the implementation of a number of articles of the Law on Special Consumption Tax for non-taxable objects: "3. Aircraft, cruise ships for the transport of cargo, passengers, tourists; aircraft serving the following purposes, including: spraying of pesticides, firefighting, film-making, photography, geodetic and cartographic activities, national defense and security.”
According to the Official Dispatch No. 11623 / BTC-TCHQ dated August 19, 2009 of the Ministry of Finance, "In order to identify imported aircraft and cruise ship to be free from SCT, in addition to import dossiers as prescribed, the importer must submit to the customs authority a photocopy of the business registration certificate which shows the function of business in the transport of goods, passengers and tourists (with the original copies or notarized), a written commitment to use imported cruise ship for business purpose of transporting goods, passengers and for tourism business and must be commit to submitting a circulation permit issued by a competent authority right after being issued."
Based on the above regulations, the HCMC Customs Department said that the tax declaration and payment of T. Yacht Company at the registration of customs declaration No. 101544802700 / A11 dated 7/8/2017 is legal.
However, nearly two years after customs clearance, the company has just sent a written request for change of use purpose as a means of transporting tourist passengers. The change takes place after the date of the customs declaration registration. According to Ho Chi Minh City Customs Department, there is no basis to refund SCT, despite the fact that company has changed its original use purpose to trade goods, passengers and tourists.
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The HCMC Customs Department said that currently there are no regulations guiding the SCT refund for imported cruise ships in change of use purpose from import for business into import for transporting passengers after customs clearance. This problem has been reported to the General Department of Customs for guidance.
By Le Thu/ Huyen Trang