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Uniform invoices for utilities bills could water down rewards

Uniform invoices for utilities bills could water down rewards

The Ministry of Finance (MOF) has announced that beginning in October this year, Taipower, Taiwan Water Company, natural gas companies and other utilities will participate in the Uniform Invoice system. As a result the number of invoices issued annually will increase. Once the new system goes into effect consumers will have additional chances to cash in on the awards doled out to holders of invoices with winning numbers in the bi-monthly lottery. MOF officials caution, however, that the added invoices could have a slight effect on the sizes of awards in the invoice scheme and people should not get their hopes up too high.

The inclusion of utilities payments in the Uniform Invoice program is the result of a bill in the Legislative Yuan in October last year which gave Taipower, Taiwan Water Company and other utilities one year to implement a system for presenting receipts to their customers. The MOF has since held a series of meetings with representatives of utility companies concerning invoices and related matters before the expanded system goes into effect in October. The businesses have indicated that they will comply with the Legislative Yuan’s bidding on the invoice system. At the same time, however, they are complaining to the MOF that they are not being compensated in any way for the financial costs and inconvenience of carrying out the changeover.

For its part, the MOF notes that that inclusion of the utilities in the invoice schemes was demanded by a resolution in the Legislative Yuan last year. That action came about because many utilities have been privatized without being required to award the public for paying their bills through the uniform invoice lottery.

Figures supplied by the MOF indicate that about 8 billion uniform invoices were issued for purchases and payments last year, of which more than half were so-called electronic invoices which are printed on heat-sensitive paper. The ministry says it will continue its efforts to expand the use of electronic invoices while targeting industries such as utilities and the food industry to promote greater overall use of uniform invoices.

Updated : 2021-09-18 19:50 GMT+08:00