29 Aug '11, 6am

Beijing decision to impose income tax on mooncakes sparks outcry in China

BEIJING (AFP) - A decision by Beijing authorities to impose tax on mooncakes, a delicacy given as gifts for the Mid-Autumn Festival, has sparked an outcry in the Chinese capital, reports said on Monday. The cakes - heavy pastries containing sweet lotus seed paste - will from this year be considered a non-cash benefit and subject to income tax, the Global Times said, citing the Beijing Local Taxation Bureau. A poll conducted by the microblogging service Weibo found that 96 per cent of users opposed the tax on the sweetmeat, and many Chinese said they would prefer not to receive them at all. 'Since when are mooncakes taxed? I'd rather not receive such benefits if I have to pay such tax,' IT worker Wang Youhua told the China Daily newspaper. The tax authorities gave no reason for the move, but the price of mooncakes has soared in recent years as retailers have come up with in...

Full article: http://www.straitstimes.com/BreakingNews/Asia/Story/STISt...

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