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For better tax inspection and insolvency procedures

Tirana, October 5th, 2015

Two important issues were discussed in the Investment Council Meeting organized in the premises of the Albanian Ministry of Economic Development, Tourism Trade and Entrepreneurship, on October 5th 2015: recommendations related to improvements of tax inspections as well as the new draft Law on Bankruptcy. Both issues have been considered by the business associations as critical and important factors that influence the investment climate in Albania.

Prior to the Meeting, the Secretariat had prepared in close cooperation with business associations and based on the results of a survey it launched until mid-September, a paper on Tax Inspection with suggestions and recommendations for the improvement of this sensitive issue to the business. The findings and recommendations were welcomed by members of the Investment Council.

Private companies acknowledge the significant measures recently undertaken by the Government, such as the new VAT Law and Customs Code, new IT system, ongoing efforts for improvements on automatic VAT reimbursement rules and procedures, designing of the new tax audit risk model, etc. However, there are still serious concerns related to the sustainability and clarity of the legal framework, implementation of tax procedures, and professionalism of tax administration, transparency and timely information of the taxpayers on the frequent legislation changes. Especially, the non-prior consultation of these legislative amendments with the private sector, was stressed out by Mr. Nikolin Jaka, Chair of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Tirana. Reference was made to the lack of involvement of the businesses in the last amendment of the Law on Tax Procedures.

Minister Ahmetaj reiterated to the IC Members, especially to the business community, to consider Investment Council as a platform for submitting their comments, suggestions and concerns also related to the fiscal package.

Another important issue of the agenda was the new draft law on Bankruptcy. A presentation addressing novelties of the new draft was delivered by the experts of International Finance Corporation (IFC), directly involved in the improvement of this law. The draft law comes as a result of a frequent request of the businesses and the IC encourages the adoption of this draft in the Albanian Assembly in accordance with the action plan.

The Council is a platform set up by the Albanian authorities with the support from the EBRD to intensify the dialogue between the government and the private sector, improve the business climate and promote good governance. The work of the Council is supported by a Secretariat, an independent body of professionals selected and contracted by the EBRD to directly engage with the business community. The initial funding for the Secretariat is provided by Italy.

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