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FPO searches for solution after private sector plea on land and building tax


The Fiscal Policy Office (FPO) will hold discussions with the Interior Ministry to follow up on a request from the private sector for a review of the land and building tax.

Finance Minister Arkhom Termpittayapaisith said on Monday that he had told the FPO to analyse the land and building tax collection. His response followed a letter from the private sector to the Finance Ministry, seeking a postponement and reduction of the tax to ease the burden on citizens and operators amid the Covid-19 situation and the Ukraine-Russia conflict.

The government has already implemented the tax.

Arkhom said the FPO will have to find guidelines to help citizens because the land and building tax is a part of local revenue, which will be used for local development.

According to Thansettakij media, it would be hard to reduce the land and building tax in this fiscal year as tax collections had started in April.

However, local authorities could use their power to postpone the tax collection. For example, the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration could defer the tax collection from April to July.

In the past two years, the government has reduced the land tax by 90 per cent to reduce the impact from the Covid-19 situation, as a result local revenue slumped by THB30 billion, while the government could not find alternate sources of revenue to compensate for the loss, Thansettakij said.

The government had offered THB10 billion assistance in fiscal year 2019-20, but it could not offer a similar support in 2020-21 as it lacked a budget. If the government postpones or reduces the tax collection, it might have a problem in finding a revenue source to make up the shortfall, Thansettakij said.

However, there are some ways to reduce the tax. For example, tax on agricultural land or building owned by an individual person could be exempted or reduced.

Published : May 30, 2022

By : THE NATION