Deputy PM Vuong Dinh Hue addresses the Ministry of Finance meeting on July 2 (Photo: taichinhdientu.vn)

Hanoi (VNA) – Deputy Prime Minister Vuong Dinh Hue has asked the finance sector to adopt drastic measures to ensure a balanced State budget and to meet State budget collection targets set by the National Assembly (NA) for 2016.

The Deputy PM said on July 2 that the Ministry of Finance needs to supervise domestic tax and expand the tax base, particularly concerning non-State sector revenue. He also said review of taxation is also needed and fairness in tax collection is essential.

Hue asked the finance sector to monitor the valuation of goods for tax calculation, including enhancing control at import customs ports.

He said a review of tax collection policy is needed because taxes and tariffs will be reduced considerably as many free trade agreements Vietnam has signed begin to take effect soon.

Lower tax revenues from import-export duties will have a significant impact on budget revenue collection.

Fighting fraud and wrongdoing in tax collection also needs to be a priority, Hue said. "Policymakers can’t let special interest groups affect the process of drafting tax policies."

Hue said the country needs to cut down on spending. This spirit should be spread at the central and local levels.

Deputy Minister of Finance Tran Hong Ha said State budget collection in the first half of this year was estimated at over 476 trillion VND (21 billion USD), equal to 47 percent of estimates and up 6.1 percent over the same period last year.

Ha said this increase was the lowest, compared to the same periods of the past two years.

Meanwhile, budget spending hit 562 trillion VND (22 billion USD).

The Ministry of Finance said challenges remain through the end of this year, with the possibility of more natural disasters, diseases and fluctuations of the world market.-VNA