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Seven Situations for Extension of Filing Deadline for Export VAT Refund (Exemption)

The State Administration of Taxation (SAT) recently issued an announcement stating that export enterprises or other units that failed to file returns for export value-added tax (VAT) refund (exemption) before the deadline because they were unable to collect all the required documents due to seven special reasons may apply for extension of filing deadline before 31 July 2015. The deadline extension is intended to further improve export VAT refund services and facilitate taxpayers.

According to an official in charge of SAT's Department of Goods and Labour Tax, some export enterprises face the predicament of not getting their export VAT refunds or being deemed taxable for domestic sales for missing the filing deadline for some export VAT refunds (exemption) due to negligence and will suffer heavy losses this year. The fact that some government departments do not issue the vouchers required for filing export VAT refund (exemption) applications until after the filing deadline objectively makes it impossible for taxpayers to file their applications on time and get the tax refund. In order to better support the development of export enterprises, the SAT issued an announcement allowing enterprises that failed to file their applications due to special reasons to extend the filing deadline from 15 April to 31 July 2015.

According to the announcement, these seven situations include: force majeure such as natural disaster or unexpected social incident; tax refund (exemption) vouchers stolen, robbed or missing due to mail delivery; tax refund (exemption) vouchers held up by the judicial/administrative authorities concerned for business or investigation purposes; failure to obtain the tax refund (exemption) vouchers on time due to economic disputes; failure to submit the necessary tax refund (exemption) vouchers on time due to death, injury, critical illness or leave without authorisation of corporate tax executives without proper handover procedures; failure to submit the customs declaration forms for export goods on time because the taxpayer had applied to customs for modifications to the declaration but Customs did not complete the modifications before the filing deadline; the government departments concerned did not issue the vouchers required for filing the tax returns until after the filing deadline.

In order to further implement the State Council's call to transform government functions, streamline administration by delegating more power to the lower levels and combine power delegation with effective oversight, the announcement delegates the power to approve applications for the extension of the filing deadline for export VAT refund (exemption) from the provincial state taxation bureau to state taxation bureaus with the power to approve export VAT refund (exemption). For the convenience of the taxpayers, the work of approving the applications should be completed within 20 working days after acceptance of the applications. The provincial state taxation bureaus should closely monitor the approval of extension applications and conduct random checks on the outcome of the approval granted to guard against tax risks.

Content provided by Picture: HKTDC Research
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