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Bangladesh Urged To Follow Through With VAT Implementation

by Mary Swire, Tax-News.com, Hong Kong

03 February 2016


Bangladesh needs to implement revenue-raising reforms, including following through with the introduction of the new value-added tax, to increase public investment in critical infrastructure and strengthen social safety nets.

In its 2015 Article IV Consultation report for the country, the IMF called for timely implementation of the new value-added tax (VAT), supported by an effective communication strategy to highlight the tax's features and benefits.

Initially scheduled to be completed in July 2015, the VAT implementation process suffered major setbacks in 2014 as well as strong opposition from the business community. However, progress has been made this year and the authorities are working towards full implementation in July 2016.

The Fund recommended that authorities finalize the draft for a modern Direct Tax Code and said that while the rates for corporate and personal income taxes are in line with those of countries at similar income levels, their bases should be broadened, and property taxation should be expanded.

The report also urged the authorities to carry out administrative reforms to enhance tax transparency, reduce discretion by tax officials, and simplify compliance.

The country's fiscal deficit is expected to widen in fiscal year 2016, the IMF said.

TAGS: compliance | tax | investment | economics | business | value added tax (VAT) | tax compliance | property tax | fiscal policy | revenue guidance | International Monetary Fund (IMF) | corporation tax | Bangladesh | tax reform | individual income tax | Tax

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