Wed, Jan 13, 2016 - Page 13 News List

National tax revenues increased 7.2 percent last year

PROPERTY TAX BOOST:There was a last-minute flurry of transactions last month as many home sellers tried to avoid the capital gains tax that took effect this month

By Crystal Hsu  /  Staff reporter

The nation collected NT$2.12 trillion (US$62.97 billion) in tax revenues last year, an increase of 7.2 percent from 2014, aided in part by a last-minute surge in property transactions, the Ministry of Finance said yesterday.

Property taxes totaled NT$2.36 billion last month alone, more than double the level a year earlier, from a total of 112,072 transactions, a 72 percent increase over December 2014, statistics department Deputy Director Hsu Ray-lin (許瑞琳) said.

“The sharp increase [in property taxes] is indeed surprising,” Hsu told a news briefing, attributing the rise to a desire by home sellers to avoid having to pay higher taxes on transactions.

Starting this month, capital gains from property transactions are subjected to levies of 15 percent to 45 percent depending on the length of time the owners have had them.

Revenues from property taxes jumped 11.6 percent to NT$113.5 billion last year, despite a sluggish market for the most part of the year, Hsu said.

Corporate income tax grew 14.5 percent to NT$461.2 billion, while personal income tax jumped 15.1 percent to NT$472.7 billion, the ministry’s report showed.

That suggested firms and individuals fared better compared with 2014, despite a global economic slowdown, the ministry said.

Corporate and personal income taxes generated 44.1 percent of overall tax revenues, while total tax revenues beat the budget target by 8.8 percent, the ministry said.

The securities transaction tax remained a drag on activities, generating NT$81.9 billion, a decrease of 7.6 percent from 2014.

The decline came as turnover dropped 2.97 percent year-on-year to NT$94.5 billion a day from NT$97.4 billion in 2014, the ministry said.

Commodity taxes rose 5.3 percent to NT$182.1 billion, attributable to a 13.5 percent increase in the number of imported cars, although overall new car licenses fell 0.7 percent, the ministry said.

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