Tax & Revenue

More Taxes to be levied on Alcohol, Cigarettes

Date: 28 August 2018; Type: Legal News; Source: Myanmar Times

The government has submitted its Union Taxation Bill for the 2018-2019 fiscal year, which includes higher tax rates on alcohol and cigarettes, to the Pyidaungsu Hluttaw.

Under the new bill, which will take effect starting October 1, taxes for alcohol and cigarettes will be raised to adjust for inflation and GDP growth, said U Maung Maung Win, deputy minister of the Ministry of Planning and Finance. “This will also help the government generate more tax revenues,” he said in Parliament on August 24.

Starting October 1, the price for a packet of cigarettes will be raised between 25 percent and 50pc, to K600 and K1001 compared to K400-K801 last year. Accordingly, taxes per packet of cigarettes will increase to K6-K21 from K4-K16 before.

Taxes on alcohol will also be revised upwards and divided into a total of 16 price tiers. Under the new bill, the minimum price per liter of the lowest tier of alcohol will be raised by around a third to K1,000 from K750 before. As such, taxes paid per liter of alcohol will increase to K122 from K91.

At the highest layer, the price per liter will be raised to K 29,000 and taxes will total K6,703 from K26,000 and K5,100, respectively. There will be no difference in the taxation rates for beers and wines under the new bill.

Other changes include not needing to pay income tax for reward money when providing information on drug trafficking. Under the current law, informers who receive reward money of K10 million and above are taxed.

“Now, the amount of reward money will be raised and restrictions such as paying tax on reward money of K10 million have been removed. Under the new law, there will be no taxes payable on reward money regardless of the amount,” said U Maung Maung Win.

The total estimated tax revenue for the coming fiscal year is more than K7.5 trillion. More than half the revenues will come from income and commercial taxes, while the remaining taxes will come from special commodities taxes on alcohol, cigarettes and vehicles, as well as customs, oil and gas extraction and the Aung Bar Lay lottery.

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