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Hua Hin
Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Bangkok is cracking down on tax evasion via agriculture

The Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) intends to crack down on landowners who produce fruits and vegetables to avoid paying taxes on unoccupied sites.

With the BMA estimating that it has lost roughly 100 million baht in tax income yearly as a result of this practice, Bangkok Governor Chadchart Sittipunt has directed authorities to investigate all parcels repurposed as agricultural land to avoid taxes, including a 100-rai piece in Huai Khwang district.

Speaking after a meeting with BMA executive officials, Chadchart said that in Ratchathewi district alone, the agency should be able to collect roughly four million baht in land taxes each year. Yet, landowners have resorted to planting fruit and vegetables on their unoccupied plots in order to avoid being legally compelled to pay taxes. As a result, the BMA has only been able to collect roughly 300,000 baht in taxes for this area each year.

In addition to clamping down on tax evaders, the governor has directed employees at the Department of Land Transport (DLT) to investigate motorists who have not paid taxes on their automobiles. Prior to the epidemic, automobile tax income was 13 billion baht. Nevertheless, that amount plummeted to roughly 12 billion baht between 2019 and last year. The BMA will enter into a deal with the DLT to gather data on motorists and fight down on tax evaders.

The BMA is also considering implementing taxes and levies to safeguard the environment, following the example of London’s congestion charge and Singapore’s Electronic Road Pricing. Chadchart stated that the BMA is trying to reform several regulations to allow City Hall to collect taxes from other sources such as cigarettes, hotels and hostels, and gasoline use.

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