China Likely to Initiate More Tax Cuts

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Dec. 9 – Policymakers convening in Beijing for the annual Central Economic Work Conference may initiate more business tax cuts to boost the slowing economy, reports China Daily.

There are reports from a source close to policymakers saying that business tax for companies may be lowered by 1 percentage point from the current 5 percent.

If implemented, it would amount to RMB120 billion worth of tax cuts from the annual business tax revenues of more than RMB600 billion last year.

Business tax is levied on companies and individuals that provide labor services, transfer intangible assets or sell immovable property in the country.

The government wants to maintain at least 8 percent growth to provide jobs for the 10 million people joining the job market each year. Last month, the government announced a US$586 billion stimulus package to aid the economy.

“The economic conference this week may be mostly about fine-tuning these stimulus measures and thinking ahead to what next,” David Dollar, the World Bank country chief for China told China Daily.

“I think the stimulus will be enough to keep China growing at a healthy rate so the focus now should be on good implementation.”

“They (policymakers) will be laying out just how big the kitchen sink has to be to re-invigorate the economy,” Stephen Green, senior Standard Chartered Bank economist told China Daily. “All the data suggests the economy has further skidded into the fourth quarter.”