On May 22, 2017, National Bank of Cambodia (“NBC”) issued an Instruction No. T7.017.420 SJN in purpose to make a caution to all Bank, Financial Institution, and Credit Operator for stop accepting the Identity Card or Family Book or Resident Book as collateral. Last year, on March 11, NBC already issued an Instruction No. T7.016.210 SJN for informing those institutions after NBC observed and found that the Identity Card or Family Book or Resident Book was accepted and taken as collateral to secure the loan in some Bank, Financial Institution, and Credit Operator.
Since now, NBC has acknowledged that several Banks, Financial Institutions, and Credit Operators are still accepting the Identity Card or Family Book or Resident Book in securing and release loan. This action is illegal under the Code of Civil and other regulation in force. Under Instruction No. T7.016.210 SJN, NBC has explained that the Identity Card or Family Book or Resident Book has no any economy value to be the collateral. Those documents are just the legal documents issuing by competent authority to identify a person and population statistic. NBC already warned that if any banks, financial institutions and credit operators fail to comply with laws and regulations in force, that institution shall be punished under the Law on Banking and Financial Institution.
Under the Instruction No. T7.017.420 SJN on May 22, 2017, NBC wants to instruct those Banking and Financial Institution to get more attention for complying with Instruction on March 11, 2016 and Law on Banking and Financial Institution effectively. In its letter mentioned that if any banks, financial institutions and credit operators fail to comply, they would face with penalties such as withdrawal the licenses or the Registration Permit or stop the business activity in accordance with Article 52 and Article 56 of Law on Banking and Financial Institution.
It comes to a big surprise for financial analysts and all microfinance institution (MIFs) themselves after National Bank of Cambodia (NBC) issued a Prakas to order all MFIs under its supervision impose no more than 18% interest rate to all kinds of loan from 1st April this year.
The Prakas is known as Prakas No. B7.017.109.P.K on Annual Interest Rate Ceiling Limitation issued on 13th March 2017. This Prakas aims to help reducing poverty by curbing any higher interest rates for Borrowers.
In Article 5 of the Prakas has specified that all New Loans including Restructured Loans and Refinancing which is signed from this 1st April 2017 shall apply the new rule of Annual Interest Rate Ceiling Limitation. The Prakas is expected to be complied otherwise shall be subjected to the penalties as stipulated in Article 52 of Law on Banking and Financial Institutions.
On December 1, The National Bank of Cambodia “NBC” issued a Prakas requiring all Micro-Finance Institutes (MFIs) to adopt measures to promote the usage of the national currency – Riel. The implementation of this Prakas shall extend for three years. Cambodian microfinance institutions are willing to comply with the new regulation which requires them to hold at least 10 percent of their loan portfolio in the currency of the Kingdom of Cambodia.
The Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training (“MLVT”) has issued a Prakas determining the minimum wage for workers in the textile, garment and footwear industry for the year 2017. This Prakas was published on September 29th 2016 - “Prakas No. 414/16”. This Prakas was finalized subsequent to the meeting of The Labour Advisory Committee of Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training at the 8th mandate. This Prakas will become enforceable from January 1st, 2017. The range of its enforceability shall extend to the following industries: textile, garment and footwear .
Cambodia is a developing country and all sectors are growing very fast, especially the telecommunications sector. Cambodian people ages 16 to 35 year olds are particularly interested in using the internet and enjoying new technologies with 3G and 4G services across a range of devices.
Ministry of Commerce has issued a new Prakas No. 107 MOC/SM on “Filing of Annual Declaration of Commercial Enterprise” on 05th April, 2017 and at the same time nulled Prakas No. 104 MOC/SM dated on 07th April, 2008.
Since the registration system has been available to conduct online, filing annual declaration of Commercial Enterprise is too available and required to file online. All commercial enterprises will be sent a notice to file their annual declaration in the eleventh month and are required to start filing them including other references in the twelfth month counted from the date of their commercial registrations through online system. The duration for filing is provided for three months following from the beginning date of the abovementioned twelfth month
In case any commercial enterprise fail to comply with this prakas to file the annual declaration, they will be imposed under penalties set force in the laws and this Prakas. The sole Prakas will penalize 1 Million Riels for such failure.
The Prakas has indicated some particular information to be filled in the online system for all commercial enterprise including Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN), Tax Registration Date, Patent Certificate in the year of filing the annual declaration, number of employees including referenced documents specified on their duties, currently used phone numbers and email addresses of the company. It is, however, important to note that except Public Limited Company is required to submit other additional informations to the above listed which include financial statement and the company’s owner record.
On March 20th, Securities and Exchange Commission of Cambodia (SECC) issued an announcement to inform the public that SECC temporally stop accepting application for licensing a New Central Counterparty License to Derivatives Trading Firms. Notwithstanding, SECC still encourage persons who want to be a Derivative Brokerage firm and unlicensed Derivative Brokerage firm promptly apply the application. Those who are unlicensed Derivative Brokerage firms failed to get the license from SECC are warned to faced legal action.
For the public information, SECC listed the current four licensed Central Counterparty companies and six licensed Brokerage.
In the same announcement, SECC added that it will carry on accepting the application for licensing a New Central Counterparty License to Derivatives Trading Firms in the future with the date will be specified in another announcement.
On 22nd January 2017, General Department of Taxation announced (GDT) for a “Tax Amnesty” for the registered taxpayers who failed to pay and those who failed to declare the tax up to three years from the filing date. The amnesty, however, will only exempt the tax penalty for the aforementioned failings. Since the penalties are imposed in series as from 10, 25 or 40 percent which is quite significant, the amnesty tend to encourage the taxpayers to pay theirs owed tax by exempting such penalties. This exception will only officially announce and enter into force by GDT this early April.
In addition to the penalties exemption, there is another sub-decree signed by Prime Minister Hun Sen and dated early of February 2017 to exempt tax on profit for Small-Medium Enterprises (SMEs). This exemption intends to push up the SMEs to voluntarily and formally register their businesses tax in GDT as the condition to be exempted. The period of tax on profit exemption will last for “Two Years” till the end of 2018.
Despite there are some incentive tax policies, it is important to note that the “Tax Code Amendment” through 2017 law on financial management appeared to strengthen the tax system. The amendment was seen to provide a clearer authority for “GDT Auditors” to intensively audit on the distinction between the bank statement and the tax returns. The empowerment of such authority is to prevent taxpayer avoiding on provide a full information. GDT authorities now have power to directly request to the bank to provide the bank statement of the taxpayer being audited.
No. 1112 TRC
Guideline on Measure to Eliminate Mobile Phone Sim Cards without Identification Document,
Contradicted to Inter-Ministerial Circular No. 001, dated February 28, 2012
In the high spirited attempt by competent authorities to protect the national security, safety and public order, The Ministry of Interior (“MoI”) and Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications (“MPTC”) have issued the Inter-Ministerial Circular No. 001, dated February 28, 2012 on Telecommunication Services and Business Management which instructed all operators, branches and resellers to implement a protocol which requires all users of telecommunication services to complete a telecommunication services form.
This Circular follows the provisions in chapter 2 of Law on Taxation (LoT) proclaimed by Royal Kram No. នស/រកម/0297/03, dated February 24, 1997 and Prakas No. 1173 សហវ.ពដ.ប្រក, dated 31 December 2003 on Salary Taxation to enhance standard of living and employment of employees and workers in all factories and enterprises in Cambodia. Some benefits obtained from working shall be exempted and excluded from the tax on salary base and shall not be subject to the fringe benefit tax. These exempted fringe benefits are: