Almost $2b in Taxes Collected in Six Months

The General Department of Taxation collected nearly $2 billion in taxes in the first half of 2022 – a 29.87 percent increase – as the economy starts to show signs of recovery from Covid-19.
Traffic on a street in central Phnom Penh on November 10, 2021. Picture: stringer
Traffic on a street in central Phnom Penh on November 10, 2021. Picture: stringer

Nearly $2 billion in taxes has been collected during the first half of 2022, marking a 29.87 percent increase compared with the same period last year.

The General Department of Taxation said on Tuesday it collected 986.10 billion riels, or about $243.48 million in June. Compared to June 2021, this is a 45.27 percent jump amounting to 307.29 billion riels, or about $75.87 million.

Overall, tax collection in H1 2022 maintained year-on-year (YOY) growth. Income tax rose by 27.19 percent, value added tax by 33.37 percent, payroll tax by 16 percent, special tax by 34.01 percent, stamp duty on transfer of property ownership rose 44.38 percent, and tax on house and land rent increased 10.12 percent.

On Thursday, economist Ky Sereyvath said February 2021 was a bad time for Cambodia due to Covid-fueled lockdowns and other restrictions. He added that the government waived taxes on almost all businesses and many operations closed as a result, leading to less tax collection.

“In 2022, the economy will recover due to the opening up of the economy and cities, which will enable all businesses to operate and tax collection will increase as well,” Sereyvath said.

Pech Pisey, Director of Transparency International Cambodia, said on Thursday the increase reflects an improved capacity and efficiency of tax collection of the General Department and its officers.

“It is a positive step to enable Cambodia to increase the amount of tax collection that is the revenue of the state and increase the capacity of the Cambodian budget based on the annual budget,” Pisey told Kiripost.

“Optimizing tax collection is a positive that we welcome, and it is the right reform process. At the same time, I think promotion of non-corruption and equality in tax collection need to be fair according to the law,” he added.