Besra Gold has received formal notification from the Vietnam Ministry of Finance that export tax assessments totalling $12 million against Bong Mieu Gold Mining Company and Phuoc Son Gold Company have been repealed.
The Ministry of Finance has provided the company with copies of the final resolutions on Besra’s second complaint against the General Department of Customs. Decision 754/QD-BTC, relating to Bong Mieu Gold Mining Company and Decision 755/QD-BTC relating to Phuoc Son Gold Company repeal the tax claim applied for goods exported and imported by Besra’s operating companies in Vietnam.
The company says it is delighted by the news that its position on this assessment has been vindicated. It says it has always complied with every aspect of the laws and regulations of Vietnam and has worked hard to prove this to the authorities in relation to this matter.
“This tax assessment has been hanging over us for more than a year and has caused the company significant hardship. Our ability to import supplies and equipment was suspended for a period, as was our ability to export gold. Additionally, the US$12 million negative assessment kept investors away and limited our access to credit facilities. With the ruling now behind us, we can now rebuild our production in Vietnam,” it said in a statement.
“With this decision having been considered at all levels of government, including local tax authorities, the Ministry of Finance and the Prime Minister’s office, we are heartened that Besra and its operations at Phuoc Son and Bong Mieu in central Vietnam continue to have the full support of the government.
“Whilst this ruling closes an exceptionally difficult 12 months for the company, there is still much work to be done to repair the damage it has caused. Coupled with the severe weather events of November 2013 that resulted in suspension of operations at Bong Mieu, we can safely put 2013 down as our most difficult year to date.
“With the reversal of the export tax ruling, production at Bong Mieu re-commencing from May 1, and the persistence and hard work of our team in Vietnam, we are already seeing improvements in Vietnam operations,” it said.
Besra has also advised of the impending departure of chief financial officer Jane Bell. Pending the appointment of a new CFO, the company has engaged its former CFO Peter Tiedemann to oversee the operations of the finance department.