Vietnam starts VAT refund
HANOI, 16 July 2012: Vietnam has started its VAT refund scheme at two international airports, Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City.
The VAT refund scheme is a one-year test run until 30 June 2014 to gain feedback and make adjustments before it is officially launched.
Four banks have been designated to handle the tax refunds; BIDV and VietinBank at Tan Son Nhat Airport in HCMC and Vietcombank and Maritime Bank at Noi Bai Airport in Hanoi.
However, conditions apply. The bill must not be more than 30 days old from the date of departure and just 85% of the VAT paid can be refunded, while the refund is available only in Vietnam dong. VAT is a standard 10% on most items.
There are some products that are applicable for refunds as they come under export rulings set out by Ministry of Industry and Trade.
To claim the VAT refund, foreigners must show a bill-cum-VAT refund declaration form and a receipt along with the goods in question, a passport or identification paper and a relevant tax invoice at a VAT refund desk or to a custom official prior to check in.
The VAT refund scheme was announced last September to encourage tourists to shop. If it proves successful, the service will be available at other airports and checkpoints.