Albanian Tax Administration – Growing With A Good VAT

VAT is the only tax that involves the government not only in collecting substantial money from the private sector but also in paying a good deal of it back to them in the form of input tax credits. 136 countries now have a VAT of some sort and remain at least 63 countries that do not have VAT’s, 41 of which now have some other form of general consumption tax and 23 of which appear to have thus far been able to avoid facing the problem.

Over the last decade, VAT has arrived in Albania. The principal reasons for arrival of this form of taxation were, first, the early adoption of this form of taxation in the European Union (EU) and, second, the key role played in spreading the word to economic transition countries by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in particular and by international agencies and advisors more generally. The success of VAT in the EU showed that VAT worked. The consistent support and advocacy of this form of taxation by the IMF and others in a variety of countries, encouraged and facilitated the adoption of VAT by countries with much less developed economic and administrative structures than those in the original EU member states, like Albania.

The VAT, it’s invariably among the most important sources of government revenue. Not all is so good for VAT, however. Some of problems have always been inherent in the structure and operation of VATs but are exacerbated by the increased fiscal weight being placed under pressure for new fiscal revenues for example to offset revenue losses from tariff reductions needed to accord with WTO requirements. It is thus perhaps time for a new look at the role of VAT in Albania. Outsource Accounting 

I want to make some question that can be a referent point for this discussion.

Can VATs be adapted to cope with the rising demands for more access to revenues by local and regional governments?
Can tax administration deal with such new problems as those arising from changes in business practices with financial innovations and e- commerce?
Does VAT provide a way to tap the informal sector or does it instead tend to expand that sector?

The answers to such questions are not only critical to the fiscal stability of Albania, but also to her economic growth and development. Not only do we as yet have surprisingly little solid empirical knowledge of some critical factors but the relevant economic theory also remains rather sketchy and we know even less about the relevant political economy context.

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