The Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) has joined those urging the Government to overcome its budget deficit by broadening the tax base. Among options the society will submit to Financial Secretary Antony Leung Kam-chung are the introduction of taxes on mobile phones and signboards, and a general consumption tax. However, ACCA will not seek changes to profits tax, salaries tax, property tax, personal allowances, stamp duty or estate duty. The Hong Kong Society of Accountants (HKSA) has called on the Government to introduce a land and sea departure tax, which travellers would pay when they leave the SAR by car or ferry. The sentiment was echoed by ACCA. An HK$18 per trip departure tax would collect more than HK$900 million in revenue a year. Based on government statistics, ACCA expects this year's budget deficit to be about HK$60 billion, with the figure dropping to less than HK$10 billion next year. 'The mobile phone isn't hard to implement as it is something everyone can afford, I mean - HK$10, most mobile-phone users spend more money than that on long phone conversations,' said Jimmy Chung Wai-kwok, chairman of ACCA's sub-committee on budget and tax. Mr Chung said a mobile-phone tax of HK$10 per month would generate as much as HK$460 million a year, while a signboard tax of HK$1,000 a year would add an extra HK$200 million to government coffers annually. However, Mr Chung added that existing taxes should be lowered so as to not over-burden tax-payers. 'A general consumption tax would not be welcomed by many people . . . if the Government does go ahead with the additional taxes, it should adjust its existing ones so that we do not give tax-payers too much of a burden,' he said. A 3 per cent consumption tax would yield an estimated HK$18 billion a year. The association also outlined measures related to the three key issues - education, environmental protection, and financial services - which were addressed in the chief executive's policy address. They include removing the ceiling for deduction of self-educational expense for salaries tax purposes, introducing a concessionary tax rate for firms engaged in the environmental protection industry, and providing tax incentives for operational headquarters based in Hong Kong. Mr Chung said these measures were intended to stimulate investment in the economy at a reasonable cost to the Government. Established locally in 1950, ACCA is one of the largest professional accountancy bodies in the world. It has more than 13,500 members in Hong Kong.