‘Grievance cell’ to accept tax-related complaints

- POST REPORT, Kathmandu
‘Grievance cell’ to accept tax-related complaints

Nov 23, 2014-

Finance Minister Ram Sharan Mahat has said the government is preparing to set up a “grievance cell” to accept complaints related to tax payments within the next week.

At a time when taxpayers are complaining about an “unfriendly tax-payment environment”, the unit could help resolve the problems, said Mahat at a programme organised by the Federation of Nepalese Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FNCCI) here on Sunday.

The private sectors have long been complaining about the highhandedness of tax officials and lack of understanding about the tax system that lead them to make mistake but they should face music. Mahat said the cell will be equipped with a toll-free number. “Based on the complaints registered, the authorities concerned can also tax evasion,” he said.

In order to restructure the tax administration, the government recently formed a high-level Taxation System Review and Recommendation Commission.

The finance minister said the government has prioritised increased use of information technology in the taxation system to boost collection. “The government plans to expand IT’s use in the tax system,” he said, urging the FNCCI to help bring non-taxpayers into the tax bracket.

Chudamani Sharma, director general of Inland Revenue Department (IRD), said cases of non-filing have emerged as a major problem. “The department has considered it as an outcome of problems mainly in the registration process,” he said. As per an IRD report, VAT non-filers stood at 30.98 percent last year. Traders not issuing VAT bills is another problem. IRD is planning to mobilise college-level students to check whether the bills are issued at stores.

Rup Bahadur Khadka, chairman of the newly-formed high-level commission, said the government was looking at minimising administrative costs. He said the commission plans to make the tax-payment process more systematic and transparent.

Presenting a paper, Chartered Accountant Sudarshan Raj Pandey, who is also a member of the high-level commission, said the existing exercise duty regime is “more distorting” in nature.

He highlighted the need for restructuring the excise duty regime, provision of paying taxes through the banking system, formation of a tax clearance commission, making the tax system agriculture business-friendly, and simplification of the process of decaling income tax.

Published: 24-11-2014 09:30

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