China's tax revenues rise 22.6% in 2011

Updated: 2012-02-15 10:31


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BEIJING - China's tax revenues surged 22.6 percent year-on-year to 8.97 trillion yuan ($1.42 trillion) in 2011, the Ministry of Finance said Tuesday.

The growth rate stayed flat with that of last year, the ministry said in a statement on its website.

The steady growth was a synthesized reflection of the country's relatively fast economic growth, high consumer prices, and good corporate performances over the past year, the ministry said.

Production-related taxes rose the most last year. Receipts from value-added tax and turnover tax grew 15 percent to 2.43 trillion yuan and 22.6 percent to 1.37 trillion yuan, respectively, in 2011, remaining unchanged from one year earlier.

Meanwhile, revenues from corporate income tax surged 30.5 percent year-on-year to 1.68 trillion yuan, up from 11.3 percent last year, accounting for 18.7 percent of the country's total tax revenues.

The resource tax made a noticeable 43.4-percent rise to hit 59.89 billion yuan last year, up 19.9 percentage points from one year earlier, as the country mulls tax reforms to boost the sector's sustainable development.

But tax revenue growth slowed on a quarterly basis last year. Tax revenues grew 6.8 percent in the fourth quarter of 2011, down from 22.6 percent in the third quarter, 27.2 percent in the second quarter, and 32.4 percent in the first quarter, the ministry said.

The ministry said the quarterly decrease was caused by a slowing economy, tax-reduction policies, cooling auto and property sectors as well as losses in the oil refining industry, the ministry said.

The economy expanded by 9.2 percent year-on-year in 2011, with its GDP growth rate dropping to a 10-quarter low of 8.9 percent in the fourth quarter, according to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).

To ease the effects of rising consumer prices on people's daily lives, the government raised the personal income tax threshold from 2,000 yuan to 3,500 yuan in September.

As a result, personal income tax revenue dropped 5.5 percent year-on-year in the last quarter of 2011. But the whole year's personal income tax revenue registered 25.2-percent growth from the previous year.

The ministry attributed the still-dazzling growth in personal income tax revenue to rising residential incomes, the ministry's efforts to enhance tax collection, and the blossoming capital and art markets, which fueled the property transfer tax income.

The consumer price index, a main gauge of inflation, despite easing to a 15-month low of 4.1 percent in December, still grew 5.4 percent year-on-year in 2011 -- well above the government's full-year control target of 4 percent.

The government also initiated a series of other policies to reduce tax burdens last year. These policies included cutting tariffs on imports of energy resources and raw materials and raising the thresholds on value-added tax and turnover tax.

Revenues from valued-added tax and consumption tax on imported goods rose 29.3 percent year-on-year to 1.36 trillion yuan in 2011, down 6.4 percentage points from a year earlier.

Furthermore, both auto and property sales slowed amid government tightening measures, abating revenues from the property transfer tax and the vehicle purchase tax.

Property transfer tax revenue increased 12.1 percent from a year earlier to 276.36 billion yuan in 2011, down from 42.1 percent the previous year.

The income from vehicle purchase tax grew 14.1 percent year-on-year to 204.45 billion yuan last year, dropping 39.9 percentage points from a year earlier.

NBS data showed that sales of commercial housing rose 4.9 percent to 1.1 billion square meters in 2011, down from 10.6 percent in 2010, while auto sales only rose 2.45 percent year-on-year last year, the slowest growth pace in 13 years.