Helping China with taxation

February 05, 2004, vol. 29, no. 3
By Diane Luckow

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As China continues the complicated process of fine tuning its taxation system, SFU is helping to provide an overview of how the Canadian system works.

A group of 27 officials from the Beijing taxation bureau just finished a six-month taxation training program at the David Lam centre for international communication at the Harbour Centre campus.

“We developed an advanced professional training program for the Chinese professionals several years ago but have been training students in the short term - two or three weeks or for a month,” says Yvonne Walls, director of the Chinese program. “This is the first time we have trained a group for six months.”

Students learned about cross-cultural communication and all aspects of Canada and Canada's taxation system, including municipal, provincial and federal tax systems. Instructors included SFU business professors, tax lawyers, tax accountants, and officials from the provicial government and Canada Customs and Revnue agency.

SFU business professor Alex Gelardi, who gave a series of lectures, notes that China is still a communist state and doesn't have a well-developed taxation system. He found that the Beijing students had a variety of interests, from tax administration, to personal tax and tax credits and corporate taxation.

While the Chinese government has sent tax officials around the world to learn about different taxation methods, Walls says this is the first time they have come to Canada for tax instruction.

She is hoping to attract more tax officials from other parts of China to attend the program.

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