I Will Monitor Tax Amnesty Program Myself, President Jokowi Says

By Office of Assistant to Deputy Cabinet Secretary for State Documents & Translation     Date 10 Agustus 2016
Category: News
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Photo caption: President Jokowi gives his directives at the Tax Amnesty Program Dissemination at PatraJasa Hotel, Semarang, Central Java (9/8) (Photo by: Public Relations Division/Oji)

Photo caption: President Jokowi gives his directives at the Tax Amnesty Program Dissemination at PatraJasa Hotel, Semarang, Central Java (9/8) (Photo by: Public Relations Division/Oji)

President Joko ‘Jokowi’ Widodo said that he himself would monitor the implementation of the Tax Amnesty program.

The Government also hopes that the program could be a success, the President said.

Therefore, in order to explain the program to the people, President Jokowi and a number of the Working Cabinet Ministers disseminate the program in a number of cities.

On Tuesday (9/8), the dissemination was done in Semarang.

“I will monitor the implementation of this Tax Amnesty program myself. I have set up a team and a task forcewithin the Finance and Development Supervisory Agency (BPKP) to also monitor the implementation of this program,” the President said at Rama Shinta Ballroom, PatraJasa Hotel, Semarang, Central Java.

To date, repatriated funds from this Tax Amnesty program has reached Rp11.8 trillion, while there are already at least 1,810 taxpayers who joined the program.

Nevertheless, President Jokowi considers that this figure is still small but since it is just a beginning, it is not a problem.

President Jokowi believes that the success of this Tax Amnesty program would strengthen Rupiah against the Dollar and increase state revenues.

“If this program is successful, rupiah will strengthen against the Dollar. Our foreign exchange reserves have increased from US103 billion to US$111 billion. Other countries are experiencing drop in their foreign exchange reserves due to the strengthening of the Dollar. Ours, however, has increased. This is what we have to be grateful for,” he said.

President Jokowi also believes that once the repatriated funds from this Tax Amnesty program are distributed to the banks, liquidity of the banks will improve; thus credits distributed to the people will be easier accordingly.

On that occasion, President Jokowi also answered questions given by Central Java Governor Ganjar Pranowo, who expressed concerns from businessmen aboutguaranteesgiven by the state on the confidentiality of taxpayers’ data and whether the data that has been submitted will be protected.

Some sides, the President said, have also expressed their concerns that this program would only be used as a ‘trap’.

“The data cannot be used as the base for investigation and criminal prosecution. This is what the Law says, not me.Also, no one can request access to the data and it won’t be leaked to anyone as well. It’s already clear. Those who leak the data will be sentenced to five years in prison,” the President said, adding that the goal of this program is for the good of the nation.

Regarding law enforcement supports, President Jokowi noted that the Government is cooperating with several institutions such as the Financial Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre (PPATK), the Indonesian National Police, and the Attorney General Office, to make a joint commitment to reinforce the Government’s commitment to this program.

Previously, the Government has already strengthened the underlying law to implement this program through Law on Tax Amnesty, instead of only through a presidential regulation or a ministerial regulation.

President Jokowi also explained that the Government would work ‘all out’ to explain to the people that this Amnesty Program is for the interest of the people and the country amidst the current economic situation.

“We live in Indonesia. We make a living here with facilities provided by the Government. My question is, why do you keep your money abroad?” the President said, while urgingmore businessmen to take part in this program and not to link with program with other issues.

President Jokowi further said that to take part in this Tax Amnesty program, taxpayers only have to report their wealth that have not been reported in their previous Tax Declaration Forms (SPT) and pay certain amounts of money.

This program can be everyone, including micro, small,and medium enterprises with a turnover below Rp4.8 billion, the President said.

President Jokowi also reminded that the era of information transparency at the global level will begin in 2018; so it is better for the people to make the most of this Tax Amnesty program because later on everyone has to report their wealth.

The President also reminded that he already has the data of taxpayers who keep their money abroad.

“I can assure that I have the date of their names, their addresses, their passport numbers. I have all the data. However, I’ve never used it for negative thing. I will use it for the good of the nation,” the President said.

Semarang is the fifth city after Jakarta, Surabaya, Medan, and Bandung, where the dissemination of this Tax Amnesty program were held.

Also attending the event were First Lady Ibu Iriana Joko Widodo, Minister of Finance Sri Mulyani Indrawati, Minister of State-owned Enterprises Rini Soemarno, Cabinet Secretary Pramono Anung, Governor of Bank Indonesia Agus Martowardojo, Head of the Financial Services Authority (OJK) Muliaman Hadad, Central Java Governor Ganjar Pranowo, and around 2,500 businessmen in Central Java. (RMI/DID/OJI/ES) (EP/YM/Naster)

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