VietNamNet Bridge – Nguyen Thi Hau, vice general secretary of the Viet Nam History Association, spoke with Viet Nam Government Portal (chinhphu.vn) about how the urbanisation process has affected urban architecture heritage sites. Nguyen Thi Hau, vice general secretary of the Viet Nam History Association. Photo cand.com.vn The concept of urban heritage seems to be new in Viet Nam. Why do we distinguish urban heritage from heritage in general? Actually, we are still getting acquainted with the concepts of tangible and intangible heritage. The concept of urban heritage mentions cultural architecture in urban areas. In the past, we paid less attention to urban heritage. But in the last 10 years, the changes of the city during urbanisation have caused us to notice urban heritage issues. What are the difficulties … [Read more...] about How should we preserve our urban heritage?
HCMC getting tough on tax evasion Van Nam HCMC – Tax and customs agencies in HCMC will take bold steps to fight tax evasion, smuggling and trade fraud while creating favorable conditions for household businesses to turn into companies, heard a meeting on February 6. HCMC vice chairman Tran Vinh Tuyen, speaking at the meeting on budget collections in the city in January, called for measures to prevent tax evasion and provide more support for household businesses. Tran Ngoc Tam, head of the HCMC Department of Taxation, told the meeting that the city obtained total tax and fee revenues of VND34.26 trillion (over US$1.5 billion) as of on February 6, growing 13.3% over the same period last year and meeting 9.8% of the year’s target. Revenues from domestic sources leapt 13.29% year-on-year to VND25.88 trillion, with corporate income tax contributing VND8 trillion, VND1 trillion higher than the year-earlier period, Tam said. The city is aiming for domestic revenues of VND59 … [Read more...] about HCMC getting tough on tax evasion
How long Resolution 11 will be kept in place is the question Professor David Dapice - Photo: Kinh Luan The Government’s Resolution 11 was issued on February 24 this year to tame inflation and stabilize the macro economy. The Saigon Times Daily had an email talk with Professor David Dapice, a professor of economics at Tufts University and an economist with the Vietnam Program at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government, over the Government move. The Saigon Times Daily: Do you think the new package of measures under Resolution 11 will eventually bear fruit? - Professor David Dapice: The problem is not if the February measures (Resolution 11) will work, but how long it will be kept in place. Recent growth has been driven by SOE (State-owned enterprise) and real estate investment, both of which rely on rapid credit growth. If a real slowdown emerges, it is likely that there will be fierce pressures to reignite credit growth again and if that happened, then … [Read more...] about How long Resolution 11 will be kept in place is the question
Greece on Monday appointed a former anti-terror prosecutor to spearhead its latest tax evasion crackdown in a bid to boost its depleted state coffers by a hoped 11.8 billion euros within two years. "There are studies by many organisations that give a shadow economy range from 25 to 35 per cent of GDP. Based on that and with simple calculations, one can assume that 10 to 15 billion euros are lost to tax evasion every year," Finance Minister George Papaconstantinou told a news conference. "Tax evasion constitutes a crime against the country," the minister said, adding: "This is a battle for the country's future." The ministries of finance, development, justice and police will work together to clamp down on tax evasion, undeclared property, smuggling, money laundering and illegal gambling and trade, in addition to hunting down uncollected fines that date back years, Papaconstantinou said. "In the past, the ratio of fines that were (successfully) collected was less than 10 per … [Read more...] about Greece names anti-terror cop to run tax evasion crackdown
Son Doong Cave - the world's largest cave located in the central province of Quang Binh, has been named on a list of "28 incredibly beautiful places you won't believe actually exist" by Buzzfeed - a New York-based social news and entertainment website. The entrance to the cave was first discovered by a local man in 1991, and was further explored by a group of cavers from the British Cave Research Association in 2009. The cave, which is believed to have been created 2-5 million years ago by river water eroding limestone underneath a mountain, has been opened to tourists. It costs about US$3,000 per person, and the tours are already fully booked until 2015. Only 220 permits have been issued this year for tourists to explore the cave. Although the demand from tourists to explore the cave is increasing, a tour can only cater for groups of two to eight people. This is aimed at ensuring their safety because the tour includes adventurous hikes; as well as preserving the natural beauty … [Read more...] about Son Doong Cave: how can we balance between exploring and preserving the cave’s natural beauty?
The fall or rise in car prices depends on importers as well as manufacturers in the country, VnExpress online newspaper cited a car trader as saying. Pham Vu Duc, director of Hanoi-based car importer Duc Hoa Co. Ltd, said, "With the current policy, the car prices cannot be reduced soon." "We cannot reduce the price when our original price has been raised by customs authorities," he said. "For example, we import a sedan at a price of US$10,000 but after looking up several auto price websites the customs authorities tag the price of US$14,000 on our sedan. And, we have to pay tax for the new price rate," he added. "How can we reduce the price when our price is raised?" Duc asked. Duc Hoa has recently quit importing automobiles and shifted its business to importing Thai bicycles. Carmakers in Vietnam said import tax reduction will not have much influence on prices of vehicles sold in the country. Deputy Minister of Industry Do Huu Hao said the 10 per cent tax cut is not strong … [Read more...] about Cars Prices May Not Fall Despite Tax Cut
In early December 2011, the prime minister enacted Instruction 2196/CT-TTg to strengthen property market management. Pham Van Khanh, the head of the Construction Economics Department at the Ministry of Construction, tells VIR how a high property tax could help reduce speculation in the property market. Why has the Ministry of Construction (MoC) proposed that the government introduce a high property tax and revise personal income tax towards property transfer? Tax is a state management tool. Countries around the world have used that vehicle very effectively. Vietnam has levied high tax rates on areas in which the state does not encourage investment for market moderation and management. The implications of property speculations for the market have been apparent in the past years. Enormous amounts of capital poured into property have remained idle due to project delays and have not been able to generate any added value. Meanwhile many other areas face critical capital shortages. … [Read more...] about MoC eyes tax remedy for property speculation
Expensive gold hits property trading By Dinh Dung - The Saigon Times Daily HCMC - Sales of houses and land plots which are often assessed in gold have been stagnant since the local market began raising gold prices at an accelerated rate over two weeks ago, making those who assess their houses in gold unable to sell properties when buyers are waiting for gold to drop. According to property experts, the exorbitant prices of gold have mostly affected houses and land while the condo segment has seen little impact because most apartment projects are valued and traded in local currency. The gold rate fever, within days, has driven the values of houses and land assessed in gold up by as much as hundreds of millions of dong. One house on Chu Van An Street in HCMC's Binh Thanh District is being advertised for sale on the trading floor of ACBR at a price of 195 taels of SJC gold. At the time the property was announced for sale on October 21, the gold rate at Saigon Jewelry Holding Company's … [Read more...] about Expensive gold hits property trading
Vietnam hoped foreign investment will bring benefits like economic growth and more jobs, but tax evasion by creative accounting is what it is getting A nationwide investigation into tax evasion found 83 percent of foreign companies used various tricks to minimize their tax liability last year. Inspectors from the Taxation General Department said they have ordered 720 out of 870 foreign enterprises to pay nearly VND400 billion (US$19 million) in back taxes and penalties for tax evasion. In some provinces like Bac Giang, Hoa Binh, and Gia Lai, 100 percent of foreign corporations are tax violators, the report said. The investigation found that the most popular tactic to evade taxes was profit shifting. The most common form of profit shifting was by manipulating transfer pricing to overstate costs when importing from units belonging to the same company in other countries and understate export values. The inspectors said the firms were overcharged for equipment and inputs by … [Read more...] about Vietnam victim of corporate tax evasion
Unreasonable tax seen as properties transferred By Dinh Dung in HCMC The Finance Ministry's recent circular coded 161/TT-BTC, which gives guidance to levy personal income tax (PIT) on individuals who trade properties, has drawn public attention these days. According to the document, a tax rate of 25% will be calculated on the difference between a property's transaction price and the input cost. For a property whose input cost price is not identified, a tax rate of 2% will be charged on the total current transaction price. Many agree that a tax should be levied on those properties as they are transferred, but they reckon that 25% is too high and unreasonable for the owners. More reasonable with 2% Do Thi Loan, general secretary of the HCMC Real Estate Association (HoREA), tells the Daily that the advantage of taxing property transfer contracts is to force sellers and buyers to be transparent in their transaction price, which is often hidden or known only between dealers. However, a 25% … [Read more...] about Unreasonable tax seen as properties transferred