Tax breaks to ease coronavirus stress

Tax breaks to ease coronavirus stress

The Finance Ministry is offering sales tax reductions and a short-term tax break for certain businesses to help them cope better with the Covid-19 pandemic.

"The death toll and transmission of the Covid-19 pandemic [globally] have kept increasing and this has been directly and indirectly affecting the Thai economy," Thanakorn Wangboonkongchana, secretary to Finance Minister Uttama Savanayana, said yesterday.

"The economy faces a major hiccup and business closures and that will affect local consumption, employment and exports."

The sales tax rate for electric tricycles has been halved to 2% to promote the use of clean energy and to encourage electric tricycle makers to maintain employment during these hard times, Mr Thanakorn added.

Sales tax for fruit and vegetable juices has also been halved to 10%, said Mr Thanakorn, because they were healthy products.

And as an incentive for those in the tourism and hospitality industries to keep their staffs, the ministry is offering them a corporate tax waiver until Sept 30, he said.

These businesses include spas, massage parlours, restaurants, pubs, bars and other types of entertainment establishments.

The ministry has also postponed plans to raise sales tax on tobacco and cigarettes from 40% to 60% from Oct 1 this year to to Oct 1, 2021.

Thanakorn: 'Economy faces major hiccup'

Mr Thanakorn said the postponement aimed to mitigate the impact of the pandemic on the cash flow of both the tobacco-making industry and tobacco growers.

The ministry has also agreed to extend the maximum period for completing the exports of tax-free goods from 15 days to 30 days and allow further extensions up to as much as 120 days if necessary.

The requirement to submit documents relating to such exports within 60 days was also being extended to 90 days, said Mr Thanakorn.

He added that businesses could even ask for up to 150 days extra in special cases.

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