Excise opts for blockchain
Department aims to improve efficiency
The Excise Department aims to improve the efficiency of revenue collection rather than raise taxes to enhance the revenue outlook amid Thailand's gradual economic recovery.
Policy implementation should not affect the domestic economic recovery in order to continue the momentum, said director-general Lavaron Sangsnit.
Raising taxes may stunt the economic recovery, leading the department to study tax collection of new goods rather than raising rates, said Mr Lavaron.
The department has an obligation to collect taxes to meet the Finance Ministry's revenue collection target.
For fiscal 2021, the target is set at 530 billion baht, a figure close to the 548 billion in tax revenue collected in fiscal 2020.
The department will incorporate blockchain technology to administer revenue collection for fiscal 2021, he said.
The Revenue and Customs departments both plan to adopt this technology for their operations, said Mr Lavaron.
Blockchain technology will help identify the price, import duty and tax liability of each imported product, he said.
The technology can help thoroughly assess revenue collection for each department and integrate revenue collection of the three government departments into a single database, said Mr Lavaron.
With blockchain, tax evasion should be difficult because the three departments will conduct tax audits in coordination with each other, he said.
A blockchain-integrated procedure in assessing the tax returns of oil exports is already in progress and it is expected to be implemented in next year's first quarter, said Mr Lavaron.
The main reason to use blockchain technology for oil exports before other goods is because they generate revenue of more than 200 billion baht per year, accounting for two-thirds of the Excise Department's total revenue collection, he said.
Blockchain should be able to help determine whether oil is actually exported out of Thailand or if it is circulated for sale domestically, said Mr Lavaron.