Ministry proposes cut in some fees, charges

The Ministry of Finance (MoF) has drafted a few adjustments to charges and fees in several sectors under its management.

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In a draft circular amending Circular No 286/2016/TT-BTC, the ministry has proposed to reduce the fee for the issuance of export food certificates, at the request of the importing country, from VND350,000 (US$15.5) per shipment to VND200,000 per shipment.

The ministry has also planned to abolish the fee for the granting of quarantine certificates for animals, terrestrial animal products, imported or transited seafood, temporary imported products for re-export or goods transferred through border-gates, as stipulated in Circular No 285/2016/TT-BTC.

In the draft circular amending Circular No 225/2016/TT-BTC, the ministry has proposed to reduce the level of fees for evaluation, and for the issuance of biosafety certificates for the use of genetically modified products as food and animal feed, from VND120 million (US$5,330) to VND105 million each case.

According to the draft amendments to the Circular No 277/2016/TT-BTC, the ministry reduced the fee for evaluation, and for confirmation of information content in drug and cosmetics advertising from VND1.8 million to VND1.6 million per application. 

It has also reduced the level of fees for evaluation, and the granting of permits for the import of traditional medicines and pharmaceuticals, from VND200,000 to VND150,000 per item.

In addition to these, the ministry has proposed changes in fees for the registration of establishment of enterprises and business certificates, which are stipulated in the Circular No 215/2016/TT-BTC. The fee is reduced from VND200,000 to VND100,000 per company.

The ministry has sent the draft documents to the related ministries, ministerial agencies, the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI), and the people’s committees of central cities and provinces for their comments and contributions.

The MoF has also requested the research institutions to give comments on the draft circulars, which will be collected and referred to while revising the drafts, so that they can send timely reports to the Government and the Prime Minister.

Dau Anh Tuan, head of the VCCI’s Legislation Department, said that the proposed reduction of charges and fees by the MoF is a move contrary to the proposal to increase value added tax (VAT), which has been a controversial issue recently.

Many proposed fee and charge cuts of up to 50% are significant. Especially for those just starting a business, reducing the establishing cost by a few hundreds of thousand VND is also noteworthy.

He said that this was a positive move to materialise the Government and the Prime Minister’s policies and declaration that 2017 would be the year of reducing the cost for enterprises.

To Hoai Nam, standing vice chairman and secretary general of the Vietnam Association of Small and Medium Enterprises, applauded the amendments.

He said that because these fees and charges have a direct impact on businesses, after consultation with ministries, departments and local authorities, the MoF should consult the business community.

He added that the views of the business community and State management agencies are often different, so the ministry needs to balance them to come up with new and innovative regulations.

Recently, the ministry has proposed an increase in the VAT rate from 10 to 12%, saying that it was necessary amid the shrinking State budget revenue and public overspending. Meanwhile, economic experts reckon that the poor would suffer the most by the increase, as most of their spending is for daily provisions.


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