Imported purchases lead to steep drop in turnover

POSTED: 04/15/16 9:04 PM

Ministry contemplates imposing turnover tax

St. Maarten News – Finance Minister Richard Gibson contemplated imposing turnover tax on goods that are imported directly to St. Maarten from abroad at yesterday’s Council of Ministers press briefing.

The minister spoke of “a leak in the circle of taxes” that are supposed to be collected by the government. “We see more direct purchases. There is a substantial shift. We see a reduction in sales at local companies. Directly imported goods are currently not subjected to turnover tax.”

Minister Gibson said that this situation leads to less employment and less economic growth.

“If this has such a disastrous effect we should consider imposing turnover tax on these goods,” he said, adding that some businesses are reporting a 30 percent drop in turnover.”

Earlier, the minister made a remark about plans by the airport to levy charges on goods that arrive on the island through tits cargo facilities. “That reeks of import duties,” the minister said. “I had a meeting with the airport’s interim-director and I have urged him to find another format. The minister of finance is the only authority when it comes to levying import duties.”

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