China will continue value-added tax (VAT) reform to support economic development and restructuring, Premier Li Keqiang has said.
The country looks to push forward supply-side structural reform, deepen reform and opening-up, simplify administrative procedures, cut taxes and administrative fees, and create a business environment that encourages innovation and entrepreneurship, promotes industrial upgrading and ensures fair competition, Li said at a symposium he chaired.
The reform of replacing business taxes with VAT was first piloted in Shanghai in 2012. It was expanded nationwide in May 2016.
The reform has made good progress and saved 1.7 trillion yuan (about $260 billion) of taxes for business owners, according to a statement released after the symposium.
Li said the policy should be improved to ensure that tax burden on businesses is reduced across the board.
Financial and construction industries, as well as small businesses, should be able to claim enough VAT credits, he noted.
The premier expected study of ways of further reducing VAT for the manufacturing sector and to optimize the tax structure.
Measures should be taken to simplify tax collection and crack down on tax evasion and fraud, he noted.
Reform should match central and local governments' responsibilities with their fiscal expenditure, while the local tax system should be improved, according to the premier.
(Xinhua News Agency September 28, 2017)