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Uncollected taxes total NT$95 bil. in 2013: MOF

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Up to 969 entities in Taiwan owed the government tax payments in 2013, and the amount of uncollected taxes totaled NT$95.712 billion, the Ministry of Finance (MOF) said yesterday.

According to the MOF, the parties owing the largest tax payments have mostly remained unchanged. Late business tycoon Huang Ren-zhong (黃任中) and the Holiday Inn Asiaworld Taipei (環亞飯店) were top tax evaders in the person and enterprise category respectively, owing NT$1.807 billion and NT$2.377 billion.

Huang has been on the top of the list in the private-person category for three consecutive years. His son, Huang Juo-ku (黃若谷) was second on the list, owing NT$1.8 billion. He also took the No. 2 spot for three consecutive years.

Late tycoon Huang's elder sister Xia Huang Xin-ping (夏黃新平) also took the No. 4 spot, owing NT$1.19 billion. The Huang family owes the government nearly NT$5 billion in total, the MOF said.

The No. 3 and No. 5 spots on the private-person list were occupied by Huang Cheng-zhi's (黃承志) family and business tycoon Lin Tien-tsai (林天財) respectively, owing NT$1.447 billion and NT$1.161 billion.

Inheritance taxes makes up most of the unpaid taxes owed by Huang Ren-zhong's family, the MOF said, adding that the inherence tax rate was once as high as 50 percent, and evasion of inherence tax could result in a substantially higher penalty. In extreme cases, even inherited property may be worth less than tax obligations. Huang Ren-zhong's son Huang Juo-ku has long resided in the U.S. and he is likely to have little incentive to honor the tax payment. The government has essentially no means to collect the defaulted tax, the MOF said.

Top Evaders Will Be Exempted from Obligations in 2017

On the corporate side, the Holiday Inn Asiaworld Taipei has been on the top of the list for five consecutive years. The No. 2 and No. 3 spots were occupied by Mau Jui Corp. (茂橘) and Mau Yu Corp. (茂裕) respectively. They were owned by the same person and collectively owe NT$2.383 billion. The No. 4 and No. 5 spots were taken by Feng An Metal Co (峰安金屬) and Niu Xin Co. (紐新企業), owing NT$711 million and NT$678 million respectively.

The MOF publicize the nation's largest tax evaders on July 1 every year, focusing on persons who owe more than NT$10 million and enterprises that owe more than NT$50 million.

The government only tries to collect unpaid taxes for 15 years, after which the defaulted taxes will be written off. As such, both late business tycoon Huang and the Holiday Inn Asiaworld Taipei, the top tax evaders in the person and enterprise category, will be exempted from their tax obligations in 2017.

The MOF pointed out that the number of persons and entities owing tax payments last year was reduced by 76 compared to a year ago, and the total amount of uncollected tax was also reduced by NT$3.652 billion.

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