LHASA, April 23 -- Pharmaceutical drug companies have become the most prominent contributors to tax revenues in Tibet, according to the region's 2013 taxpayer list released by the local tax authority.
Kangyuan Medicine Company Ltd. in Qamdo topped the list, paying 244 million yuan (39.6 million U.S. dollars) in tax last year. Tibetan Kangjian Medicines Sales Company and Haisco Pharmaceutical Group Company Ltd. followed, paying 228 million yuan and 179 million yuan respectively.
The Tibetan economy has kept expanding and the bureau has raised the benchmark for companies entering the annual list to a tax amount of 20.31 million yuan, breaking the 20-million-yuan mark for the first time and up 8.55 million yuan from 2012.
Yang Chengbi, deputy chief of the bureau, said that the top 100 taxpayers brought in an aggregate tax revenue of 5.83 billion yuan in 2013, up 12.2 percent from the previous year.
The figure took up 39.5 percent of the region's total tax revenue in 2013, up 5.7 percentage points from the previous year, said Yang.
Sixty-eight out of the 100 firms in the final list are based in Lhasa, contributing 3.93 billion yuan in combined tax revenues. The remaining 32 companies are mostly in Nyingchi, Qamdo and Shannan.
The final 100 mainly involve industries including mining explorations, processing, power production and supply, finance, information transmission, wholesale and retail, transportation, commercial services and real estate.
Since the annual list was created in 2010, no private companies have been selected.
Yang said that about one-third of the region's 251 private companies engaged in the entertainment business and were small and less competitive.
"Still small private companies have potential as the central government has promised to grant tax preferences to propel their development," said Yang.
The State Administration of Taxation (SAT) said in a statement on April 19 that small firms with annual taxable income under 100,000 yuan may have their business income tax halved without government approvals. The tax break threshold was previously 60,000 yuan.
Small and micro firms serve as the foundation for continuous and steady economic growth, according to SAT.
By the end of 2013, there were about 11.7 million small and micro companies in China, accounting for 76.6 percent of the total number of firms in the country.
In 2013, Tibet's gross domestic product reached 80.77 billion yuan, up 12.1 percent from the pervious year. The growth rate was 4.4 percentage points higher than the national average and the third fastest among China's 31 provincial-level regions, official statistics showed.