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Vietnam may cease collecting road fees from motorbike owners in early 2016

Friday, July 24, 2015, 15:02 GMT+7

The Central Council of the Road Maintenance Fund has proposed that the Vietnamese government stop collecting annual road maintenance fees as of January 1, 2016, because of the very poor efficiency of the fee collection over the past two years. The proposal was included in a report sent to Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung by Minister of Transport Dinh La Thang, chairman of the council. “The annual revenue of the fee in 2013 and 2014 accounted for only 21 percent of the plan of each year,” the report said. “In the first six months of 2015, the fee revenue sharply decreased compared to the same periods of the past many years, and represented only 6.71 percent of this year’s target,” according to the report. The fee collection is stipulated in Government Decree 18/2012 dated March 13, 2012 on the establishment, management and use of the Road Maintenance Fund. Based on the decree, the Ministry of Finance issued a circular to stipulate two fee ranges, including the VND50,000-100,000 ($2.3-4.6) range per year for electric bicycles and motorbikes with an engine capacity of 50 - 100 cubic centimeters (cc), and the VND100,000-150,000 range per year for those with engine sizes of over 100 cc. Based on these ranges, people’s councils in provinces and cities will determine their own rates that fit their social and economic characteristics. Under the decree, the people’s committees of wards, communes and towns are tasked with arranging the fee collection, but they have done the task in manners that were neither uniform nor consistent, from fee collection to submission to the state coffers, Minister Thang said. In addition, sanctions and penalties on those who evaded the fee have proved unfeasible and difficult to control, the minister added. Currently, while most provinces and cities have been collecting the fee, some others have halted their collection, such as Khanh Hoa and Da Nang, and Ho Chi Minh City has still delayed the collection, Minister Thang said. Such a situation has led to an inequality among fee payers and caused bad public opinion, he added. Therefore, the Central Council of the Road Maintenance Fund suggested that Prime Minister Dung assign the Ministry of Transport to coordinate with the Ministry of Finance and other relevant agencies to amend Decree 18 to abolish the fee and submit the draft amendment to the premier within this year.

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