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Tax office wants Ko parents to pay up

Tax office wants Ko parents to pay up

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – Taipei City Mayor Ko Wen-je’s parents said Wednesday they will have to pay NT$31,200 (US$990) to the taxman for a NT$10 million (US$317,000) housing loan they gave to their son.
Finance Minister Chang Sheng-ford denied the action against the new mayor and his parents was politically motivated after complaints that his opponent in the November 29 election, Kuomintang candidate Sean Lien, had met with no tax inspection despite frequent allegations.
In a phone interview with the Chinese-language Apple Daily, Ko’s mother, Ho Juei-ying, said that the Ministry of Finance Taxation Administration had told her husband that he would have to go and pay the NT$31,200.
The sum needed to be paid because the couple had received interest payments on the loan to Ko to the tune of NT$250,000 (US$7,900) spread over two years, tax officials reportedly told them.
Ho said they had no argument with the officials’ explanation and would go and pay the tax, but she complained how her husband, who was more than 80 years ago, had had to visit the tax office several times on motorcycle just to explain the loan.
Ho said she hoped the tax administration would treat all people in the same way and not single out certain individuals while others got away without trouble, the Apple Daily reported.
An official of the National Taxation Bureau of Taipei said he would not comment on individual cases.
Minister Chang said that having served as director of the Taxation Administration for more than ten years, he knew the service would not let itself be used for political purposes.
An investigation would only be launched against a citizen if there was evidence pointing toward problems, he said. If the investigation concluded that no tax had been evaded, the case would be closed and the citizen left in peace, he added.
Chang also denied that the tax inspectors were not investigating Lien. Every single case was covered by privacy rules and could only be made public if the person being investigated told the media himself, the minister said.
More than 80 percent of allegations of tax evasion against individuals were fake, he told reporters, while acknowledging that there was a staff shortage which made it more difficult to find cases.


Updated : 2021-09-24 21:25 GMT+08:00