HCMC – The General Department of Taxation has raised concerns over a surge in invoice fraud, as certain businesses have taken advantage of the shift from paper invoices to e-invoices for illicit gains and illegal trading. This trend has led to a significant increase in tax evasion and fraudulent activities.
Dang Khac Phuc, head of the Tax Office of Binh Thanh District, HCMC, shared this alarming situation during a mid-year meeting of the HCMC tax authority on July 19. Since e-invoices were introduced a year ago, more than 17,000 e-invoices with authentic tax codes and 450,000 e-invoices without codes have been issued in HCMC.
He further explained that many businesses are attempting to pay lower tax amounts or evade taxes altogether by obtaining invoices to claim deductions for part of their expenses. Consequently, illegal invoice trading services have sprouted to cater to this demand.
Phu Tho Province’s police recently uncovered an invoice crime ring, involving five individuals who established 524 shell companies to sell invoices to businesses and organizations. Between March 2022 and September 2022, the total value of e-invoices issued by these companies reached a staggering VND33,000 billion.
A company in Binh Thanh District, supposedly dealing in trading salangane nests, issued invoices amounting to VND34,000 billion within one week. However, tax authorities found that only VND40 million was related to salangane nest trading, while the rest was for stock trading, raising suspicion of fraudulent activities.
Such cases are just a few among many other businesses showing signs of tax crimes through the issuance of fraudulent invoices amounting to thousands of billions of dong.
During the meeting, the tax authorities reported that tax collection in the first half of this year reached VND164,290 billion, meeting nearly 51% of the full-year estimate. However, the figure was 5% lower than in the same period last year.