The head of the tax department yesterday urged Chinese firms to update their information with tax authorities and fully comply with local law.
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Speaking at the first Cambodia-China Tax Forum, held this week in Siem Reap, Kong Vibol, director of the General Department of Taxation (GDT), said a significant number of Chinese doing business in Cambodia do not understand local tax regulation and thus operate outside the law.
He said many fall victim of unscrupulous agents who feed them false information.
“I noticed that Chinese investors and businesspeople do not understand the procedure of tax registration. They rely on agents and brokers, who sometimes cheat them,” the head of GDT said.
Mr Vibol asked Chinese enterprises to enlist the services of professional accounting firms to file tax returns and improve their understanding of local tax law.
“Some companies are registered with the wrong contact number, address or contact person, making it difficult for tax officers to communicate with them. This causes them to miss the tax filling deadline,” he said, adding that any company that fails to meet its tax obligations will be punished according to the law.
Yesterday’s forum sought to enhance Chinese investors and businesspeople’s understanding of local tax law, addressing issues like the recent overhaul of the tax system, taxpayer registration, tax obligations and double taxation agreements with third countries.
“We are very happy to see so many traders, investors, and businesspeople from China doing business and investing in Cambodia. We want them to register with the GDT and give accurate information so that we can provide a good service,” Mr Vibol said.
Mr Vibol said Chinese firms must make sure the information they provide GDT is accurate and up-to-date, including the name of any tax agent or broker they are employing, as well as email address, contact number, and contact person.
“In case you have any inquiries, GDT officers are always happy to help you with any tax-related question,” he told his audience.
Li An, economic and commercial counsellor at the Embassy of China, said the Cambodia-China Tax forum is a good platform for enterprises to improve their understanding of the Cambodian tax system, and to ensure they take advantage of all incentives granted by the government.
“This forum represents a great opportunity because firms will be able to benefit from the advice of tax experts,” Mr Li said.
“New investors must have a good grasp of the Cambodian taxation system, which has recently undergone a deep reform.
“If they cannot understand how the system works they will miss out on incentives granted by the government which will increase the cost of operating in Cambodia,” he added.