FPO mulls cutting tax revenue target

FPO mulls cutting tax revenue target

The Fiscal Policy Office (FPO) is mulling a revision of this year's tax revenue target of 2.87 trillion baht because of the coronavirus crisis.

The FPO is considering a reduction of the revenue collection targets of the Excise, Revenue and Customs departments for fiscal 2020, which ends on Sept 30, said FPO director-general Lavaron Sangsnit.

The previous revenue collection target for fiscal 2020 was set at 2.87 trillion baht, but the Covid-19 situation has compelled departments related to tax revenue collection to issue several policies to address ailing economic conditions, Mr Lavaron said.

2020 is an unusual year because of the pandemic, altering tax revenue targets and forcing the government to use fiscal policy for economic stimulus, he said.

The tax-related measures applied by the Finance Ministry include reducing some taxes and postponing tax payments in order to generate liquidity for businesses and individuals.

For tax revenue collection in fiscal 2021, the collection target of 2.67 trillion baht remains unchanged, as departments involved with tax revenue collection must improve their ability to collect taxes through new measures, Mr Lavaron said.

For the state welfare card, new registration was previously scheduled between April and May, but the process had to be postponed because of the viral outbreak.

The FPO will propose to the government opening a new registration process immediately to expand the state welfare card database to those in need of financial assistance, Mr Lavaron said.

The government will continue to support basic welfare payments in terms of utility spending. Examples include subsidising tap water cost of 100 baht per household per month and electricity bills of up to 230 baht per household per month.

The 45-baht discount per person on purchases of liquefied petroleum gas will also continue, but such purchases have to be made at stores partnering with the Energy Ministry.

For fiscal 2021, the government has already set a budget to support these welfare benefits, while the FPO will receive a budget of 40 billion to 50 billion baht each year.

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