The Ministry of Finance (MoF) is mulling a VND24 trillion (US$1.04 billion) support package for businesses hit by the coronavirus pandemic by exempting and reducing tax and fees.
Minister of Finance Ho Duc Phoc said that the 15th National Assembly (NA) on Sunday discussed the implementation of the socio-economic development and State budget plans for the first six months of the year.
The proposal will be sent to the NA and the Government for approval once completed.
In addition, the ministry also submitted a proposal to postpone the implementation of Circular 40/TT-BTC on tax for business households until January 1, 2022 to create more convenience for taxpayers.
Earlier, the Government approved a VND26 trillion support plan for businesses and individuals affected by the pandemic. The money is currently being disbursed.
He added that the ministry had requested the Government to cut regular spending by 10 per cent and conference and business fees by 50 per cent to gain more resources to fight the pandemic.
At the same time, the Government needs to improve the efficiency of public investment, including official development assistance projects. They should consider cutting inefficient projects, while managing securities, insurance and currency markets. Fiscal and monetary policies should also be well coordinated.
The finance ministry has provided nearly VND8.2 trillion to the Ministry of Health (MoH) to cover vaccine costs, and another VND12.3 trillion is on the way, he added.
Regarding procurement of medical supplies and equipment for pandemic prevention and control, the minister said the issue had been resolved in Government resolutions which allowed the appointment of contractors for procurement in emergency conditions. The MoH is responsible for pricing and trading in accordance with Government guidance.
"Currently, the MoF has issued a circular guiding localities and the MoH to make timely procurement for pandemic prevention and control," he said.
In the first half of the year, the socio-economic picture was positive with GDP growth of 5.64 per cent, and State budget collection reaching 58.2 per cent of the estimate, up 16.3 per cent on the same period last year.
State budget expenditures ensured efficiency, reaching 41.2 per cent of the estimate, with a surplus in the first 6 months of the year.
Public debt is also sustainable for restructuring. Government bonds are issued with a term of up to 12 years, with an interest rate of only 2.6 – 2.7 per cent a year.
The stock, insurance and money market have developed well, including securities, stocks, bonds and the derivatives market. The insurance market increased by 16.2 per cent.
The current stressful issue is the complicated pandemic, he said, adding that the Government and the Prime Minister had been taking proactive and drastic measures in the pandemic fight to ensure socio-economic development. — VNS
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