On July 19, Minister of Finance Oleksandr Danyliuk had a meeting with members of the European Business Association (EBA) to discuss steps aimed to improve the tax administration and to solve issues affecting business.
During the meeting the Minister of Finance presented main steps aimed to improve tax administration which had been elaborated by the Ministry of Finance jointly with Parliament’s committee chairwoman Nina Yuzhanina, experts, public and business including the European Business Association.
EBA’s representatives made a point in the course of the talks that it is not the tax rates themselves, but the way they are administered and the work of the State Fiscal Service which pose the main problem for business. That is why the presented initiatives of the Ministry of Finance are in line with the expectations of business, since their main goal is to simplify tax administration and to reduce pressure on business. Amendments proposed by the Ministry of Finance include a comprehensive reform at the SFS and the liquidation of the tax police. Also, the representatives of the Ministry of Finance presented key performance indicators (KPIs) developed for the State Fiscal Service jointly with business and experts. They will be setting the direction of the reforms of the tax authorities. They also make it possible to follow up what the State Fiscal Service has done so far and what is still pending.
One of the key aspects of the reform at the SFS is the transformation of the customs authorities which business is keen for. Following the initiative by the Ministry of Finance, an automated system for the distribution of declarations has been introduce at the customs, which shall reduce manipulations by customs officers. It was also decided to launch mandatory photo- and video surveillance for the customs clearance process; the “single window” procedure is due to start on August 1. Further steps include the launch of the inter-ministerial targeting center and mobile groups to fight corruption at the customs.
“Without changes in administration and the full-scale transformation of SFS operations all tax reforms are bound to fail, which also affects budget revenues and protection of investments. Our goal is to reduce pressure on business and to create favorable conditions for business development. Currently we are completing the preparation of our proposals and are going to present them soon”, the Minister of Finance said.
Representatives of the EBA expressed their wish to continue active participation in the elaboration of amendments to the Tax Code and regulations aimed to simplify tax administration.