VAT or NCD, It Doesn’t Matter

Submitted by Anthony Davis


Changes to the so-called basket of goods have left consumers worried that they might not be able to afford to feed themselves and their children as they will be forced to pay more for the goods they need – Barbados Today […](04 September 2015)

I dare say that it will not affect everybody’s shopping habits. It will not affect the members of this “people-centred Government”, and their ilk. They have the wherewithal to purchase whatever they want, any amount they want and whenever they want. This tax on these items which have been removed from the basket of goods and which now attract 17.5% VAT is for the plebs of our society.

On the one hand you have the Minister of Health colluding with the Minister of Finance to tax sweet drinks under the preposterous idea that that would stop people from buying such drinks, and so stop them from getting an NCD. This was just another willy nilly tax to get more money out of the populace’s pockets for Government’s coffers. Now we see that it is nothing but such a tax, because the said taxpayers are now being taxed for trying to eat healthy.

It is a case of “damned if you do, and damned if you don’t”.

Pray tell me, how can you talk about reducing the number of NCDs, if you now put 17.5% VAT on those items which are deemed good for a healthy diet? I didn’t go to school for very long and I only went to Brumley, so I would like some legal mind to help me untangle this web which has been woven for the taxpayers of this country to fall into.

So we are back at square one.

We can go to the fast food restaurants and eat our fill – it costs less and it doesn’t attract 17.5% VAT. I would laugh if this was not so serious. The thing is that he does not put the taxes to any sensible use – such as funding education, the QEH, the Psychiatric Hospital, the Child Care Board, the Welfare Department, or the Ministry of Sport, or the Ministry of the Environment – but gives them to such entities as Sandals and Cahill Energy.

The money is his so he can do whatever he likes with it!

Why worry about the lower echelons of our society, and the so-called middle class, it’s only their taxes he is giving away. Sparrow once sang a song of which some of the words were: “They say we paying to earn, but Sparrow say we paying to learn.” That was about Trinidad and Tobago, but it pertains to Barbados now. The old people always said: “Better the devil you know than the one you don’t.” All I can say is that we cannot do anything right because this Government has us between a rock and a hard place.

This is really unfathomable!

The worst part is that even flying fish – the most important part of our national dish – now attracts this destructive 17.5% VAT. What can the hotels, restaurants, stand-alone restaurants offer the tourists, if they have to pay an arm and a leg for our national dish? Tourists are already cutting back on their spend, and now comes this knockout punch for our flying fish and cou-cou.

I would suggest that the Minister of Tourism organizes a cook off among all of the restaurants on the island to see who can come up with a new national dish. The Minister of Finance could perhaps find something else, because he has doomed our present one to failure.

Calling the QEH, calling the QEH, come in please!

This is the Minister of Finance!

I had the bright idea of placing 17.5% VAT on some health items – including our well-loved flying fish – so people may start switching to fast food which is cheaper, and fills a hole just as well as the flying fish, tuna, etc. which are now attracting that amount of VAT.

Please be prepared for an upsurge in NCDs!

Over and out!

25 thoughts on “VAT or NCD, It Doesn’t Matter

  1. You have hit the nail on the head, government seems to be one big conman. This change to the basket of goods was designed to rake in more money pure and simple. What these fools in government, and the nincompoop at BRA that advise them do not understand is that people would not now purchase these items as they did before. As a result, the tax yield on these items would not materialise.

  2. TAX TAXES and more TAXES when you have to pay more is tax no matter the name the DBLP government is nothing but TAXES ,, Not getting my money .Let it rot in the stores,

  3. @Anthony Davis “It will not affect the members of this “people-centred Government”, and their ilk. They have the wherewithal to purchase whatever they want, any amount they want and whenever they want.”


    But should they [the political class] be buying and eating whatever and how much ever they want?

    No wonder the members of the poitical class rarely make it to three score and ten.

    Too busy cutting theirr own throats with their eating forks.

  4. There should be no VAT on flying fish or on any other fresh, frozen or canned fish.

    There should be no VAT on whole grains, such as cornmeal, oatmeal, barley etc.

    So okras, cornmeal, flying fish, tomatoes, onions, sweet peppers etc. used in our national dish which our illiterate foremothers invented and which is a very, very healthy way of eating should be VAT free.

    There should be no VAT on fresh or frozen meat, chicken, pork, beef, mutton etc.

    There should be no VAT on fresh, frozen or dried fruits and vegetables.

    The Minister of Education wants us to have more children so there should be no VAT on diapers, formula, baby food, baby safety car seats.

    There should be no VAT on books, text books, pens, pencils etc.

    There should be no VAT on fabrics used to make school uniforms nor on ready made school uniforms.

    There should be no VAT on toilet paper, soap, detergents, bleach sanitary napkins, tampons, condoms or contraceptives (not withstanding the Minister of Education’s advice to have more children.)

    There should be no VAT on prescribed medicines.

    • A reasonable question to ask the MoF is why does the basket of goods exempt from VAT not recognize that Barbados has one of the highest incidence of NCDs in the world?

      The same argument used by government to justify a sweet drink tax justifies the query.

  5. I wonder if civil servants are properly advising the politicians? And whether if such advise is offered if the politicians are taking the advice?

  6. See how lucky wunna is!

    “Sargassum bringing plenty fish. A lot o’ amber fish, a lot o’ cavalli, a lot o’ dolphin, a lot o’ marlin, a lot o’ billfish. So much fish in the market we en know what to do with them,”

  7. Want to raise more money! Then if your an elected, or appointed party official (DLP or BLP) then you should pay VAT on your salary, and government vehicle. To keep from increasing salaries to make up for VAT, there should be a cap on government salaries. A fee structure on public education officials as well for UWI, etc. While attorneys collect VAT from you on their services, it should be collected on the salaries they earn or paid to the Bar as Mr Smith has sued not to. Lets start leveling the playing field.

    • @Hants

      What can we say about the tourism industry, it is one leaking revenue. In another note BHTA are saying they have not been seeing high occupancy to support record arrivals being reported. It is the stats stupid.

  8. @David,

    “anomaly could be associated with the way some properties had elected to market themselves through Airbnb, ”

    Seriously. It is clear that capitalist best practice is at work in the Tourism industry.

    nuh body ent gine sue me so I done wide dat.

  9. @ David /Hants
    When you get simpletons in charge, this is the kind of thing you must expect.

    These people are allowing big shots to get away with all kinds of shiite – from CLICO crooks walking bout laughing …to Courts banking their VAT liabilities ..and Butch bringing Appleton and Jamaicans to laugh at Bajan maids…

    Wunna know that it is an open secret that most stores now sell any and every shiite ‘duty free’ to any and everyone?…..all this while Stinkliar increasing LAND taxes, introducing shiite taxes, sweet drink taxes; cell phone taxes; and raiding the basket of basic goods with taxes….

    Obviously it won’t be long before Bajans STOP paying the damn land taxes too….. wuh if the JAs can’t do shiite about the lotta big crooks ..what the hell will they do about a pensioner who stops paying the lotta land/shiite taxes?

    COMMON sense would tell them that it is better to collect $1 from 200,000 Bajans than to look for $1000 from 200 …. especially while another 200 RECEIVING blatant largesse from government and another 120,000 not contributing one shiite….

    How is it even possible to find such incompetent Brass Bowls … far less to get them together in one House of Assembly…. ?

    Gotta be a CURSE on Bajans….
    just like the damn sargassum..

    If we were not such BBs, we would DILIGENTLY seek to find out WHY we have been so cursed…
    …so that we would know what NEEDS to be done…

  10. @ Bushie,

    We Bajans are not cursed. We are blessed. We have been ding shiitte for the last 50 years and we still manage to survive the “ups and downs”.

    Now we are on the “brink” but I am betting that we will survive the turbulence by ” luck”.

  11. Hants

    You’re pure nuts if you for once entertain Bush Tea’s extraneous concept regarding the fact that Bajans are cursed. You ought to know by now that Bushie isn’t the brightest candle on the cake here on BU, and his reference to this metaphysical concept of a curse clearly indicates a mind steeped in superstitious-ideation with bent towards irrationalism.

  12. @ Dompey …6:13 PM
    But Bushie here building a saddle for your tail
    …for when Walter returns triumphantly to Bridgetown…

  13. Hants

    I ought not question the wisdom of a savant because as you have so cleverly stated above: as alone as we have America, Canada and the UK, we should be alright. (lol) Hants, no man is an island, entire of itself; every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main.

  14. @ Hants
    There is a big difference between ‘doing shiite’ ..and being cursed.
    Everyone does shiite from time to time – except of course dompey ..who IS shiite, and thus can do nothing else…
    Societies are designed to deal with normal shiite. That is the role of parents, church, school, police, courts, government etc.

    Curses come when specific kinds of abominations take root and are ACCEPTED by a society.

    When you see the people who should be UPHOLDING the law become the biggest criminals …breaking the law at will and openly…- AND THE general SOCIETY DOES NOTHING….

    When the damn GOVERNMENT can collude with their ‘esteemed friends’ to rob pensioners and widows of hundreds of millions…… and NOTHING HAPPENS….shiite then – the policyholders seem to be agreeing to get screwed…

    When you see big hard back ‘men’ leave out sweet-tailed women …and lusting BEHIND other men, while extolling the ‘virtues of stirring in shiite….

    …then you KNOW it is curse-time Boss….

    Instead of cussing Zoe, Bajans should try to understand what he is saying bout September….

  15. Caswell Franklyn

    I beg to defer with your analogy regarding my intellectual-acuity
    because the truth of the matter is Bushie isn’t any real match for me brother because I would eat him for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and then spit him out as a snack.

  16. @ Caswell
    “…..I would eat him for breakfast, lunch and dinner…”
    What the hell you encouraging Dompey with now?
    Bushie don’t play that kinda shiite yuh….
    who the hell Dompey think he talking to? … who?!!?

    He just cross a serious line yuh!!
    Bushie ain’t no damn pollster ….

    talk to he yuh!!!

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