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The Customs sector: Deploying an action plan to perform the budget collection task

14:37 | 18/02/2019

VCN- The Director General of Vietnam Customs Nguyen Van Can has just signed Directive 723/CT-TCHQ to issue an action plan for the whole Customs sector to synchronously and drastically implement solutions for trade facilitation, and for anti-tax losses in the performance of the State budget collection task in 2019.

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Customs officers of Mong Cai Customs Branch inspect imported machinery. Photo: T.Tr

Synchronously implement solutions

In order to complete the budget revenue target in 2019, the Director General of Vietnam Customs has requested all units to drastically deploy right from the beginning of the year to include focusing on the key and specific tasks as follows:

Implementing the Government’s Resolution No.01/ND-CP dated 1 January 2019 on the key tasks and solutions to implement the plan for Socio-Economic Development and State Budget Estimate in 2019 with the Government’s motto of "Discipline, integrity, action, creativity, breakthrough and efficiency”; Continuously deploying the administrative procedure reform, Customs modernization, business environment improvement and national competitiveness enhancement in 2019 and orientations to 2021 as required by the Government in Resolution No. 02/NQ-CP dated 1 January, 2019, the Prime Minister’s Decision No.2026/QD-TTg dated 17 November 2015 on improving the effectiveness and efficiency of the specialized inspection for exported- imported goods and the Government’s Resolution No. 35/2016/ NQ- CP dated 16 May 2016 on supporting and developing enterprises by 2020.

Regarding this task, the Director General has requested the unit’s leaders to ask the entire Customs officer force to raise their awareness on the significance and importance of the reform and modernization associated with management effectiveness for enhancing the performance of public duties. They must promptly receive and handle difficulties, shortcomings and complaints related to Customs field of businesses, business associations, and determine that this is the key task and needs to be regularly and continuously implemented in 2019 and the following years.

They must also continuously implement State budget collection solutions that were effectively implemented in 2018, actively analyze and evaluate State budget collection in 2019, and factors that influence the increase and decrease in revenue. Additionally, strictly comply with directions of the Government, Prime Minister, Ministry of Finance’s directors, conclusions and proposals of the Government Inspectorate, and the State Audit. The Customs officer force must continuously facilitate import and export activities, shortening the time for tax payments and Customs clearance, such as by: Expanding the 24/7 tax payment and Customs clearance scheme and expanding the scheme for Customs management at seaports and airports; maintaining and enhancing operational efficiency of the Customs-Business working group; periodically holding dialogues with the business community; proposing competent authorities to amend the provisions of the Law on Tax Administration contained in Decree No. 134/2016/ND-CP and the legal provisions related to Customs. Endeavour to collect over 5% of the target assigned by the National Assembly in 2019 (equivalent to VND 315,500 billion)

Customs units are to concentrate upon strengthening post-clearance audit, specialized inspections, fighting against smuggling and trade frauds, as well as focusing on checking quantity, value, code, and origin, ... for commodities with high tax rates, large import turnover and high import frequency.

In 2019, a number of new-generation free trade agreements will be implemented, such as the Vietnam-Europe Free Trade Agreement, and especially the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP). Therefore, the Customs authorities will face more difficulties and complexities in determining the origin of goods for enjoying preferential tariffs. Customs units need to develop control plans and programs. For this they must focus on checking C/Os, actively investigate and verify cases suspected on origin fraud, prevent profit taking from trade fraud that cause losses of State budget revenue.

At the same time, inspecting at 3 levels (General Department, Department and Branch) in accordance with internal inspection and control regulations for carrying out Customs procedures, inspection and control enclosed with Decision 4398/QD-TCHQ dated 20 December 2016 of the Director General of Vietnam Customs. Thereby, promptly detecting loopholes and shortcomings in performance for rectifying and removing them for ensuring synchronization and unification, in which the Customs branch level reviews and inspects Customs operations for imported and exported shipments under its management. The department level reviews and inspects Customs operations for Customs branches under its management; the general department level reviews and inspects Customs operations according to the functions and tasks of each unit nationwide.

Strengthening the building of contingents of cadres, civil servants and employees; maintaining rules and discipline in performing tasks; strengthening training for improving the capacity in the performance of duties by cadres and civil servants with good professional ethics, work capacity, responsibility and professionalism. Strictly handling Customs officers who wrongly perform their assigned duties and have bad attitudes and behaviors causing troubles and harassment for enterprises. Continuously maintaining patriotic aspirations in the whole sector; promoting initiatives towards producing excellent officers and good work. Praising in a timely fashion units and officers exhibiting excellent achievements, creating an exciting good practice emulation atmosphere for the performance of tasks.

Assign specific tasks to each unit

In addition to the implementation of general solutions, in Directive 723/CT-TCHQ, the Director General has also assigned specific tasks for each department under the General Department of Vietnam Customs and provincial and municipal Customs departments.

Accordingly, for the General Department of Vietnam Customs, the General Director has requested departments to develop action plans according to their functions and tasks. For which, the detailed tasks were assigned to the Import and Export Duty Department, the Customs Control and Supervision Department, the Customs Department of Goods Verification, the Customs Risk Management Department, the Customs IT and Statistics Department, the Anti-smuggling and Investigation Department, the Post-Clearance Audit Department, and the Inspectorate and Audit Department.

For the provincial and municipal customs departments, the General Director has requested strengthening the review for grasping revenue sources. Study, propose and implement solutions to increase revenue and prevent state budget revenue losses in accordance with the actual situation within units. Actively assess the impacts of international integration commitments on state budget collection at their units, and assign estimates and budget revenue target in 2019 to each Customs branch.

The departments are to focus on reviewing and grasping the tax debt at the unit; classifying recoverable debt and irrecoverable debt groups, providing detailed assessment for each debt group according to each enterprise, declaration and the tax debt status of the enterprise, and reason for not recovering tax debt, and taking handling measures in accordance with regulations.

They are to drastically handle, enforce and recover tax debts according to the provisions of law, for reducing outstanding tax debts and periodically publicize enterprises owing tax debts. They must also prevent the raising of new tax debts in 2019; strive for the tax debt on 31 December 2019 to be lower than that on 31 December 2018, both in specific number, and debt ratio/total revenue.

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Attention is to be paid to reviewing and inspecting goods’ names, code and tax rate at customs clearance and post clearance audit, for detecting and handling cases that make false declarations on goods code, preferential and low tax rate tariffs. Focus on commodities in the list of import-export goods which have risks on classification and application of tax rate.

Also, reviewing and checking the duty exemption for declarations registered from 1 September 2016 in accordance with provisions in the Law on Import and Export Duty No.107/2016/QH13, and Decree 134/2016/ND-CP on 1 September 2016. Including revised contents in the Law on Import and Export Duty No.45/2005/QH1 with the Law on Import and Export Duty No.107/2016/QH13 for a number of cases subject to duty exemption such as: duty exemption for processed goods for export, and goods subject to investment incentives…

By Thu Trang/Ngoc Loan