Thursday, March 01, 2007

Puzzle of the Day: Accountants' Interests in HK's Fiscal Matters

The Hong Kong government has just announced its latest budget for 2007-2008, read more here.

The HK Standard reported today that:

"Auditing firm Ernst & Young said Thursday: "It was perhaps a little disappointing the financial secretary did not say much on the subject of Hong Kong's narrow tax base, nor the wide proposals for reform which have been put to him throughout 12 months by various professional bodies, the public and industry."...

"Over the years, much has been said and written about Hong Kong's narrow tax base and the possible need for tax reform. But in his 2007-08 budget, Tang only devoted one paragraph to the topic," said accounting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers."

Read more here.

The million dollar question is of course why accountants have so much interests in HK's tax system at all? Their self-interests are behind this, an economist like me would argue.

But then why only accountants, why tax lawyers and other professionals who might get something from steering the tax system their way have not exhibited similar enthusiasm?

You foreign readers out there, would you please let me know whether accountants in your place of residence are as interested in the tax system as those we have here, thanks!

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