Internal Revenue Department
During the period of the Revolutionary Council Government, in order to reform the colonial administrative machinery, tax administrations, namely the Income Tax Department, Commercial Tax Department , Stamp Duty Department, State Lottery Department, Salt Revenue Department , Excise Department ,the Revenue Section of the General Administration Department , and the Office of the Financial Commissioner which existed separately under the Ministry of Planning and Finance, were merged to form the Internal Revenue Department on 1-10-1972.
From 1972-73 fiscal year to 1975-76 fiscal year, the Internal Revenue Department administered 9 kinds of taxes and duties, namely income tax, commercial tax, excise duty, customs duty, State lottery tax, stamp duty, land revenue, embankment tax and tax on extraction of minerals.
From 1976-77 fiscal year to 1988-89 fiscal year, 10 kinds of taxes and duties were administered by the Internal Revenue Department. They were income tax, goods and services tax, profit tax, stamp duty, State lottery tax, land revenue, water tax and embankment tax, excise duty, mineral tax and tax on fisheries.
With the advent of the State Law and Order Restoration Council, five kinds of taxes and duties out of 10 administered by the IRD were transferred to other relevant departments on 1 April 1989.
The Profit Tax Law , which was enacted in line with the socialist economic system, was revoked with Pyidaungsu Hluttaw Law No 1 in 2011.The Internal Revenue Department has been collecting 4 kinds of taxes and duties, namely income tax, commercial tax, stamp duty and State lottery tax from 2011-12 fiscal year onwards.
The Internal Revenue Department (IRD) aims to become a reliable and effective tax administration for the people and the government of Myanmar.
The IRD will assist the taxpayers with taxpayer education programs and other services so that they will understand their tax obligations. Furthermore, the IRD will contribute towards the building of a new modern and developed nation by collecting necessary tax revenue.
Action Plans for the Reform of the Internal Revenue Department
- Broaden the tax base while lowering rates.
- Promote environmental conservation.
- Move towards greater reliance on indirect taxes.
- Move towards self assessment in direct taxation.
- Rationalize the system of tax incentives for investment.
- Improve the capacity of tax administration.
The Strategic Objectives of the Internal Revenue Department
- To maximize the tax revenue.
- To respectfully provide the best service to taxpayers.
- To strengthen tax assessment in line with the existing socio- economic conditions.
- To ensure taxpayers are treated fairly and impartially.
- To continually monitor the impact of tax laws.
- To review the existing laws and regulations.
- To continually evaluate performance to achieve results.
- To provide staff with training opportunities to consistently develop skills, experience and knowledge.
The Objectives of Taxation
The Government collects taxes and duties not only to cover government expenditure but also to implement the following fiscal policies-
The fiscal policies are -
- To steady the budgeting system and to regulate money circulation and inflation.
- To stabilize domestic consumption, investment and saving.
- To stabilize commodity prices.
- To balance distribution of wealth.
- To facilitate economic development.
Types of taxes and relevant Laws
- Income tax – The Income Tax Law (1974)
- Commercial tax – The Commercial Tax Law (1990)
- Stamp duties – The Myanmar Stamp Act (1899)
- State Lottery tax – Directives Pertaining to State Lottery
Types of Taxes and duties collected and administering Departments
- Taxes on land (General Administration Department)
- Water tax and Embankment tax (General Administration Department)
- Tax on extraction of minerals (General Administration Department)
- Excise duty (General Administration Department)
- Tax on fisheries (Fishery Department)
- Tax on extraction of forest products (Forest Department)
- Tax levied on rubber (Forest Department)
- License fees on imported goods (Directorate of Trade)
- Taxes on transport (Department of Road Transport Administration)
- Income tax (Internal Revenue Department)
- Commercial tax (Internal Revenue Department)
- State Lottery tax (Internal Revenue Department)
- Stamp duties (Internal Revenue Department)
- Customs duties (Customs Department)
The meaning of the word “income’’ includes profits and other gains.
This law shall extend to the whole of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar and shall also apply to all the citizens of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar residing outside the Republic of the Union of Myanmar.
*Resident foreigner means:-
- in the case of an individual, a foreigner who resides in Myanmar for not less than one hundred and eighty three days during the income year,
- in the case of a company, a company formed under the Myanmar Companies Act or any other existing law wholly or partly with foreigner share-holders,
- in the case of an association of persons other than a company, an association formed wholly or partly with foreigners and where the control, management and decision making of its affairs is situated and exercised wholly in the Republic of the Union of Myanmar.
*Non-resident foreigner means any foreigner who is not a resident foreigner in the Republic of the Union of Myanmar.
*Non-resident citizen means any citizen of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar, who resides and earns income outside Myanmar for any time in a year.
Computation of heads of income
Income tax is levied on total income. Income shall be computed under each of the following heads of income: –
- capital gains
- income from undisclosed sources
- other sources of income
The word “salaries’’ includes salary, wages, annuity, pension, gratuity and any fees, commissions or perquisites received in lieu of or in addition to any salary and wages.
The incomes from salaries and capital gains shall be separately assessed under each head of income.
Income exempt under the Income Tax Law
- income received by a religious or charitable institution and applied solely for religious or charitable purposes;
- income of a local authority;
- any receipt in respect of savings as prescribed by the Rules;
- sum received in commutation of a pension;
- compensation received for death or injury;
- sum received in payment of insurance policy;
- any receipt of a casual and non-recurring nature excluding the following:
- capital gains under section 13;
- income from an enterprise;
- capital gains under section 13;
- dividends from an association of persons.