Online businesses to be pulled into tax system next year

November 16, 2020

Online merchants, YouTubers and even social-media influencers may have to start paying income tax after the finance minister announced his ministry targets at least Bt2 trillion in tax earnings from this group.

The Revenue Department plans to collect taxes from at least 500,000 online traders.

The Finance Ministry is also getting ready to propose amendments to the revenue code that cover online sales from overseas in the Senate next week once it collects comments from the House committee.

Ekniti Nitithanprapas, director-general of the Revenue Department, said on Monday that the law will require foreign businesses that use online platforms to provide commercial services in Thailand to register for the payment of value-added tax when their annual income exceeds Bt1.8 million. He said this will put local businesses at a fair footing and will also boost state earnings by at least Bt5 billion.

The Revenue Department will also expand the taxpayers’ base and cover more people, especially those who avoid filing tax returns. Thailand’s taxpayers’ base stands at 9.55 million people, but only 3 million actually pay taxes.

Many people have taken advantage of the Covid-19 crisis by earning extra income from selling products online, developing a YouTube channel or becoming social-media influences, and the ministry is planning to pull at least 500,000 of these people into the tax system next year.

Finance Minister Arkom Termpitthayaphaisit said recently that the Revenue Department should achieve its target of Bt2 trillion for the 2021 fiscal year despite the economic slowdown, as it has developed a new digital system which makes tax collection more efficient.

Source: The Nation