The Legco cross-party coalition yesterday said it would oppose any moves to bring in new taxes in the next financial year to tackle the forecast $60 billion Budget deficit. The move came as the American Chamber of Commerce urged the administration not to increase levies. Financial Secretary Antony Leung Kam-chung said on Wednesday that a chronic shortfall in revenue would result in a record $60 billion deficit. Coalition convenor James Tien Pei-chun, also chairman of the Liberal Party, said: 'We understood that the Budget deficit could reach $60 billion. But even bearing that in mind, we think the Government should not introduce any new taxes next year. 'We don't want the administration to levy any new category of taxes on any person - be they businessmen, professionals or the grassroots.' Although the Liberal Party has kept an open mind on proposed soccer betting duty and a land departure tax, Mr Tien said his party would oppose the introduction of any such taxes next year. He renewed calls for the administration to slash seven of its 3,000 fees and charges by 10 per cent. As the pro-business and unionist camps have been split on what the Government should do about corporate tax, salaries tax and personal tax allowances, it is unlikely that a consensus can be reached in these areas. Mr Leung will start meeting individual political parties next week to help prepare his maiden Budget speech, to be delivered on March 6. Assuming the deficit figure was accurate, Mr Tien said, the coalition would meet again on December 20 in an attempt to devise a new package of proposals for Mr Leung's consideration. He said the coalition would seek to meet Mr Leung to submit its proposals before Christmas to enable him to study the measures for inclusion in his Budget. The American Chamber of Commerce advised the Government not to increase taxes in an attempt to tackle the deficit, saying such a move could reduce spending by businesses and consumers. 'Taxes ought to stay where they are,' AmCham president Frank Martin said. '[If the Government] increases taxes, businesses will have less money to invest in their production, salaries . . . It will be the same for consumers . . . a large segment of taxpayers will have less to invest and spend.' Chief Secretary Donald Tsang Yam-kuen said last night that the Financial Secretary had put much effort into consultations on the Budget and had spelled out the financial situation frankly. 'He [Mr Leung] will certainly try his utmost to try to collect views from all sides,' Mr Tsang said. Leung Chau-ting, chairman of the Federation of Civil Service Unions, accused the Government of trying to mobilise public opinion against civil servants by disclosing its expenditure. He believed the administration wanted to cut civil service jobs through voluntary redundancies and out-sourcing of work. Mr Tsang promised that the Government would strictly control its size and the rate of spending.