John Dalli announces Budget
2003 measures on VAT administration
Finance Minister John Dalli yesterday announced the implementation
of new measures towards a more efficient administration of VAT. The
new measures are the crystallisation of Budget 2003s plan to reform
the VAT system in favour of small entrepreneurs and self-employed.
By mid-March, self-employed who employ an average of five persons and
whose turnover does not exceed Lm250,000, will be eligible for VAT refunds.
The refunds will take place 30 days following receipt of the VAT declarations.
Registered persons who satisfy the criteria of such scheme whose closing
date for their VAT declaration is 15 March 2003 will receive their refunds
by 15 April. The VAT department will also be assessing the companies
declared number of employees upon registration of VAT and verified with
the Employment and Training Corporation. The VAT department will also
be considering the value of sales for the period between 1 December
2001 and 30 November 2002.
Taxpayers who believe are eligible to this scheme should notify the
VAT department and send in the required information.
Companies which provide goods and services exempt with credit will have
VAT refunded to them within four months instead of five. By 2004, refund
will take place in three months instead of four.
For those companies whose period for VAT-declaration started on the
1 January 2003 and ended on 31 March, and which would have to be received
by the VAT department not later than 15 May, would receive their VAT
refund in four months instead of five.
Penalising measures which have been in place since 1 January 2003 will
also be put into action. Taxpayers with first-time declarations that
have been given in late to the VAT department due to abnormal circumstances
will have their due penalty waived and instead given a warning. Relapsing
taxpayers will be penalised according to the law.
Minister Dalli also said the VAT department would be preparing details
for another scheme to reduce penalties which had been imposed through
the VAT Act of 1995 and the Customs and Excise Act of 1997. The scheme
would benefit those persons who sent in their prospects late or failed
to register on time according to these regulations.