Mon, Oct 17, 2016 - Page 3 News List

Finance ministry’s budget allocations to rise next year

THE NUMBERS GAME:The special municipalities will get 64.77% of the funds, but Kaohsiung, Tainan and three counties will see less than this year

By Cheng Chi-fang and William Hetherington  /  Staff reporter, with staff writer

The Ministry of Finance has released the budget for the allocation of centrally funded tax revenue for next year, with total allocated funds reaching NT$246.143 billion (US$7.771 billion) — an increase of NT$169.7 billion from this year’s budget.

However, in a rare move, allocations for Kaohsiung, Tainan and Yilan, Yunlin and Pingtung counties are to be reduced from the amounts that they received this year.

The ministry said the reductions are the result of reduced business volumes in Kaohsiung, Tainan and Yunlin, and a decreased need in Yilan and Pingtung counties.

Of the planned allocations, NT$224.873 billion is to be distributed among 22 counties and provincial municipalities, and NT$21.27 billion among county municipalities and urban and rural townships.

Of the former, NT$159.421 billion — 64.77 percent of total allocated funds — is to go to the six special municipalities.

Taipei is to receive an increase of NT$350 million to NT$39.998 billion; New Taipei City an increase of NT$374 million to NT$29.445 billion; Kaohsiung a decrease of NT$20 million to NT$27.942 billion; Taichung an increase of NT$361 million to NT$24.566 billion; Taoyuan an increase of NT$152 million to NT$18.816 billion and Tainan a decrease of NT$103 million to NT$18.654 billion.

The ministry said that allocations for counties and provincial municipalities are likely to trend toward increases across the board, and that next year’s decreases are an exception.

There is also to be a decrease of NT$69 million for Ilan, NT$226 million for Yunlin and NT$35 million for Pingtung.

A National Treasury Administration offical, who declined to be named, said allocations for special municipalities are calculated based on business volume, population, geographical size and capacity of the ministry, while those for counties and provincial municipalities are based on business volume and the difference between income and expenditure.

The official said that the drop in oil prices has affected CPC Corp and Formosa Plastics Group revenues, resulting in a decrease in business volume for Kaohsiung and Yunlin.

Yilan and Pingtung conversely showed a smaller deficit this year resulting in less need for financial assistance, the official said.

If calculated on the basis of population, Lienchiang County — where the population is more than 10,000 — per capita allocations are NT$30,000.

Penghu County has a population of about 100,000 people with an allocation of NT$17,900 per person.

Taitung is about NT$15,900 per person; while in Taipei per-capita allocations are NT$14,800, according to the allocation report.

Among county municipalities, and urban and rural townships the per capita amounts are nearly half that of Taipei at NT$6,700 for Yilan County, NT$6,800 for Changhua County, NT$7,100 for Hsinchu County and NT$7,400 for New Taipei City, the report shows.

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