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Tax Department Dismisses Allegations Brought on By Capital Gains Tax Enforcement

PHNOM PENH: The General Department of Taxation issued a statement in response to social media posts that decry the organization for taking more money from citizens, while other countries are reducing taxes or introducing incentives. They categorized those who post such statements as “opposition” members, saying that they are trying to slander the new administration. The tax department retorted that the Royal Government is working hard to attract domestic and foreign investment while constantly considering the well-being and improving the lives of the people.

On September 15, the tax department announced that starting on January 1, 2024, the state will impose a 20% tax on capital gains for those selling real estate. The tax reform was meant to take place at the start of 2020, but was delayed by the Covid-19 crisis. The department explained that this is not a newly created tax and that it was put into law in the mid-1990’s.

In the statement, released this morning, the tax department said that it was postponing the collection of the capital gains tax until the end of 2024 to support the real estate sector. During the September 15 announcement, however, the department’s Director-General Kong Vibol assured the public that the capital gains tax will not affect the growth of the real estate sector in Cambodia; rather, it will raise tax revenue and strengthen compliance and equality in tax payment.

In today’s statement, the department defended its function saying, "The claim that the Royal Government…led by Samdech Hun Manet, has created a new tax or increased the tax rate does not reflect the truth. On the contrary, the Royal Government has been considering further frameworks to facilitate the implementation of the capital gains tax, such as the appropriate deadline for the introduction of capital gains tax."

The statement also dismissed claims that a 1% tax is levied on bank borrowers as false, and clarified that according to current tax law, there is no requirement to take a 1% tax on people's loans. It also refuted claims that the declining prices of agricultural products is due to taxation, saying that the government considers agriculture a priority in the developing economy.

The tax department went on to call any such allegations slander and products of government opposition, meant to cause confusion for personal gain or to attract web traffic to certain pages.

It then urged citizens to believe the information that is officially published to the public and to avoid receiving and sharing false information that aims to mislead the public.

The General Department of Taxation offers a hotline for any tax related questions through their toll-free number 1277, or through the GDT Live Chat feature.



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