Archive for March, 2017

Belize Budget to indirect Taxes to Boost Revenues

Tuesday, March 21st, 2017

Belize has rejected International Monetary Fund (IMF) recommendations to raise taxes across the board in favor of more selective reforms that are proposed as less punitive to the jurisdiction’s businesses and poorest citizens.

In his budget speech the Prime Minister and Minister of Finance and Natural Resources, Dean Barrow, rejected the IMF’s “publicly rehearsed” advice to raise general sales tax (GST), ditch zero-rated treatment for certain products, cancel exemptions, and increase personal and business income taxes as these measures are “regressive and punitive to both citizens and enterprise.”

Instead of the above-mentioned, he announced a series of “pro-poor and pro-people” reforms, which he expected to increase revenues by 2.2% of GDP. These include a 10% income tax on statutory boards of “quasi government entities;” increasing the excise levy on aerated water, beer and stout, cement, and fuel; increasing the environmental charge on imported goods by 1%t; and raising stamp duty on foreign exchange permits by 0.5%.

Belize to hike Taxes in Upcoming Budget

Friday, March 10th, 2017

According to Belizean officials, the jurisdiction is to announce wide-ranging tax hikes in its upcoming Budget in order to solve its fiscal woes.

In a recent interview, Belize’s Financial Secretary Joseph Waight said that the Government of Belize cannot rule out tax increases. In February, the Government said it was considering potential options for hikes. “We don’t know just yet, that’s still in the process we are going through but I think that at this point in time it is inevitable that there will be an increase in some taxes,” Waight said.

Waight also said that business leaders and unions have told the Government of Belize that it should first of all improve the efficiency of the tax administration and only after that look at tax hike options.