Gov’t moving again to amend environment tax

Guyana is moving again to amend an environmental tax provision in the law that the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) said discriminates against importers of beverages from other Caribbean Community (Caricom) countries.

Minister of Finance Dr Ashni Singh laid the Customs (Amendment) Bill 2014 in the National Assembly on Thursday. The Bill seeks to lower the rate of the Environmental Tax charged on beverage containers while widening the range of bottles, cans and other receptacles that will attract the tax. Current laws exempt local manufacturers from this tax which is applied at a rate of $10 on imported alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages. The proposed legislation will see a $5 tax on all bottled beverages that have been imported or produced here meaning that local manufacturers will also have to pay the tax.

According to the Explanatory Memoran-dum, the Bill seeks to amend the section in the 1995 Customs Act which imposed an Environmental Tax only on taxable goods imported into Guyana. These taxable goods are every unit of non-returnable resin, metal, plastic, glass containers containing any alcoholic beverage or non-alcoholic beverage, cardboard containers having been removed from the list of taxable goods by virtue of the proposed amendment.

The amendment extends the tax on goods imported for manufacture of such items in Guyana. Under the proposed law, a person liable to pay the tax, but who fails to do so, shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable to a fine of $5000 and, in addition, shall pay to the Commissioner-General of the Guyana Revenue Authority (GRA) twice the  …..To continue reading, login or subscribe now.



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