The primary reason why the Revenue Department of Thailand is majorly interested in incorporating blockchain for VAT payments is to enhance transparency while simultaneously eliminating fraud in the system.
The Department is actively testing blockchain to track all value-added tax payments. The innovation lab is the key testing area that puts Thailand on the way to pioneering in the use of distributed ledger for all types of tax probes if this technology gets adopted.
These technological developments were confirmed by Ekniti Nitithanprapas, the director general of the Revenue Department of Thailand.
According to Bangkokpost Blockchain will assist in the verification of VAT invoices to help eliminate illegal invoices for VAT claims. For instance, whenever a company acquires products from a second company, the former provides VAT invoices to the latter. Thus, both firms can use blockchain to confirm the involved transactions.
Furthermore, to prevent tax frauds and evasions, the Revenue Department aims at incorporating various types of machine learning and artificial intelligence in the taxation process.
These new developments will reduce tax-cheating practices while simultaneously examining tax payments transactions. Mr. Ekniti also stated that the introduction of blockchain technology would make more people join the formal tax system.
The department’s priority is to adopt new technologies including a digital tax collection system and big data collection systems. They aim to enhance efficiency through innovation while enlarging the taxpayer base significantly.
In other news, Mr. Ekniti said that the Finance Ministry’s obligation to utilize financial accounts submitted to the Revenue Department in all commercial banks’ loan approval procedure would take effect as planned on January 1, 2019. These new rules affect the small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).
The central bank needs all banks to give significant consideration to the single account scheme financial statements. These statements will get analyzed when submitted to the Revenue Department in the SME loans application processes.
However, this new requirement has faced opposition with most stating that the single account scheme will reduce financial access for a majority of the SMEs.
More of the affected companies fall within these categories which often use at least two financial accounts and submit the account with the least value to avoid or understate tax while submitting the best one for multiple loan applications from different financial institutions.
The president of the Thai Federation of Accounting Professions, Chakkrit Parapuntakul, was on record recently stating that the central bank was considering allowing banks to ask for extra collateral for all SME loans. The additional collateral would only be necessary for companies that do not entirely comply with the single account scheme.