A Case of Government Increasing Taxes to Support Consumption Habits of the People


It is ironic that in the historic month of November when Barbados prepare to celebrate ‘independence’ from England in 1966 AND jettison the Queen of England as our head of state, we are being described in some quarters as beggars and borrowers. Those with political blinkers will be happy to apportion blame to BLP or DLP.

Barbados has earned the classification as a high price destination for a reason. In order for government to meet the expense of supporting our way of life, taxes are levied on citizens to collect revenue. The majority of citizens if asked will understand the requirement to collect taxes, disagreement comes deciding which services, commodities should be taxed and by how much.

The news that government will be updating the master list of tariffs has triggered a lot of debate in the country. Unfortunately as an import dependent island, we have to import from wine to iodine. The blogmaster holds the view successive governments are happy the manage the cost of living by manipulating tariffs to protect precious foreign exchange reserves – internal devaluation. It is a fine balance successive governments of Barbados have managed to protect the parity of the dollar.

Last week local talk show moderator Dr. Kristina Hinds asked why women underwear attract a higher tariff compared to male underwear. Another example how duty impacts final cost was illustrated in this example posted to Twitter by @Michael B. of a tee shirt for $40.00 attracting $73.84 in shipping fees, $133.19 import duty, VAT$43.23 and 2% foreign exchange fee $2.28. Total final value based on ASYCUDA calculator $292.54. Apparently the brokerage fee is not included in the calculation! A reminder duties are calculated on the CIF which means to focus on the original cost of the item is misleading.

Minister Ryan Straughn has rationalized the updating of the tariffs has been done within the context of Caricom as it relates to where goods originate. Whatever the means.

A legitimate question to be asked is why was the government quick to forgive 500 million in VAT takings and is in hurry mode to revise the 2017 tariff list? We know the answer, government is leaking revenue and as usual looking for the easy fix. Analogous to the BWA leaking 50% of the to the aquifer and instead of an aggressive program to replace 100 year old pipes, the solution is to increase the water rate – reminiscent to the 60% rate hike by the late prime minister David Thompson government.

Here is a suggestion from a BU family member, collect duty from those importers who misuse the barrel trade. How many of the barrels include mock hair and the receiver of the barrel goes scot-free by paying a flat $100.0 fee? For goodness sakes, understand the inflationary effect a hike in customs duties will have on households AT THIS TIME. Again, we are an import dependent country, successive governments have embarked on a policy approach to import items because local cost of production is high. Here we are again, rampant conspicuous consumption has returned to bite us in the rear. 

We have become addicted to a lifestyle that is unsustainable. Blame successive governments, blame citizens, blame both groups. We will descend to the bottom of the pit TOGETHER.

Adrian Loveridge Column – Reduce Travel Related Taxes!

Mounting pressure is being brought by airlines and the United Kingdom travel trade onto the British Government to suspend, lower the rate or eliminate the Air Passenger Duty (APD), often referred to as ‘the highest rate of tax in the world on air passengers’. A statement from the UK Treasury has confirmed that a consultation on aviation tax reform would take place and hinted that APD could be suspended in the autumn budget amid increasing pressure to provide respite for airlines and the wider industry.

According to the Daily Mail, ‘at least 24 Members of Parliament (MP’s), including the chairman of the influential 1922 committee, Sir Graham Brady, are pressing chancellor Rishi Sunak to suspend APD until the end of summer 2021’. A suspension would allow airlines to entice holidaymakers with cheaper fares and save many of the 600 air routes lost as a result of the pandemic. MP Henry Smith, whose constituency includes London’s second airport, Gatwick, stated that ‘if we maintain our levels of air passenger duty, it will become a tax on recovery, as flying is the only viable route for investors and business people to approach and service existing markets’. The UK and Ireland Managing Director of Travel giant TUI, Andrew Flintham, warned ‘that many companies would not survive unless the current blunt approach was changed ‘ adding ‘if we enter the winter season without sensible solutions, the outlook only gets worse’.

Quite frankly, it defies logic, that our policymakers have not seen fit to temporarily reduce or eliminate the not one, but two, departure taxes plus VAT (Value Added Tax) on air tickets, together with removing the various additional tourism taxes and levies imposed before or from October 2018.

Looking at the cost of airfares from the UK to Barbados during this November as an example, where the lowest priced return economy ticket can still be purchased for as little GB Pounds 374. Over half (52 per cent) of that amount is made-up in taxes inflicted by both Governments. The APD element starts at GB Pounds 80 per person and the UK passenger service charge of GB Pounds 40.87. For the Barbados section, what Virgin Atlantic describes as Airport Service Charge of GB Pounds 52.70 plus a further Passenger Service Charge International of GB Pounds 20.70

So it does not take a rocket scientist to figure out what a massive difference a reduction in these add-on opportunist taxes could make in people’s economic ability to travel to our shores. The rationale is endlessly obvious. If you deter potential visitors in the first place by extracting high levels of taxation, then you obviously cannot collect further taxes on their accommodation, car rental, restaurant dining, shopping, activities, attractions, and so on.

While airlines across the globe are grounding hundreds of aircraft, slashing thousands of employees and fighting for their very survival, it seems almost incomprehensible that Governments are still extracting over half the cost of airfares in taxes.

Adrian Loveridge Column – For the Sake of Covid 19, Waive Taxes!

Like I would imagine, along with thousands of other small businesses we have spent the last four months trying to find creative ways of meeting our financial obligations, without any source of earned income. Where possible we have deferred actual payments to essential services by using credit cards, but there eventually remains a day of reckoning

Our bank has ceased to issue and mail printed statements, while at the same time making it almost impossible without additional cost, to produce them online. From the last physical document received, it shows interest rates of 22.5 per cent annually for purchases and a staggering 25 per cent for cash advances. Under the current dire economic circumstances and considering the miserly interest paid on deposits, this appears to be an almost obscene scenario, when in many cases the banks have dramatically reduced services offered while maintaining pre-Covid-19 monthly service fees.

In some cases certain banks have also unilaterally closed branches, forcing thousands of regular customers to travel to often inconvenient locations, only to be met by staffing levels clearly unable to cope with demand.

Should we reasonably expect more?

With the majority of our banks forced into accepting substantial ‘haircuts’, perhaps the Government feels they have no moral authority to intervene?

While the financial institutes may counter by stating they have deferred loan and overdraft payments, have interest rates been reduced to allow many small enterprises to even stand a chance of survival, let alone recovery?

In our own case, we are completely up-to-date with all Government dues payable by us, but are still owed tens of thousands of Dollars in outstanding VAT refunds dating back from February 2013. To compensate for this deficit we were forced to take a short term unsecured bank loan at 12.25 per cent annual interest.  As and when and if we finally receive these monies, will the administration and its agencies add compensation to cover this added cost?

One thing for certain, is that with no immediate end in sight into anything approaching the return to normality of the restoration of airlift in terms of arrival numbers, we cannot simply rely on our overseas market to stop many small tourism players going out of business.

There still remains a substantial domestic market and while many will argue that this source is also under enormous fiscal pressure, it may currently be the only game in town. Once again, I make an passionate plea for Government to consider waiving some of the overbearing taxes levied on this industry, at least in the short term, so that when recovery is finally imaginable, we at least have sufficient players still in business.

Adrian Loveridge Column – Tax, Tax and VAT Refunds?

Adrian Loveridge

Adrian Loveridge

By now I would have hoped in the interest of transparency, our Government would have published a full disclosure of the ‘windfall’ funds raised by the imposition of the bevy of new tourism taxes applied in October last year.

These include the Airline Travel and Tourism Development Fee (second airport departure tax), Hotel Room Levy, Direct Services Product Levy and Shared Accommodation Levy.

Why are these figures so important and why do ‘we’ need to know?

First, we have to be reminded that the stated objective of increasing the cost of each holiday to Barbados for our visitors was to assist the new administration in helping balance the nation’s books and to take fiscal responsibility off the Ministry of Tourism for funding the Barbados Tourism Marketing Inc., and Barbados Tourism Product Authority at a quoted annual cost of around BDS$100 million.

Having achieved that at a stroke, monies then became available, within a solitary year – funded by our arrivals – to look at creative ways for increasing airlift.

Following the demise of Thomas Cook Group, including its airline, our planners and policymakers were quick to persuade, at a cost, Virgin to increase capacity from Manchester and Gatwick, soaking up the shortfall, and in fact, making even more seats available.

Another example is the Lufthansa Group subsidiary and it’s three flights a week from Frankfurt. Not only adding capacity from German’s largest cities with just a short train ride and a single nonstop flight to Barbados with an additional approximately 1,000 seats a week, but further opening up Continental Europe’s connecting cities, at some of the lowest long haul fares to the Caribbean on the market.

Our European visitors tend to spend longer at the destination, making them more attractive to our accommodation options and often hiring cars, visiting attractions, activities and a myriad of eating establishments.

The Hotel Room Levy is another cost, not paid by the property involved, but by the guest, so ‘we’ need to know, if this has in any way negatively affected annual room occupancy, previously quoted at around 67 per cent per year and overall net room rate.

Thirdly, again the Direct Tourism Services Product Levy is paid for not by the tourism partner, but by our visitors. Has this relatively small additional tax, impacted on car hire rental or all the various services on offer?

Lastly, has the Shared Accommodation Levy, at last helped ‘us’ identify the hundred’s, but more likely thousands, of unregistered and therefore unlicensed alternative lodging options? If so, perhaps this has finally brought them into the fiscal contributing loop, in terms of VAT (Value Added Tax) avoidance and foreign payment evasion.

We are now also just a month away from the declared increase of the VAT rate on those accommodation partners already contributing, which will further push up the price of our tourism product in a market that has long been questioning the value-for-money they currently receive.

This at a time when many businesses, including hotels that are still waiting for agreed and overdue VAT refunds, which in some cases are over 6 years outstanding. This hardly appears to be a model for encouraging new tourism investment or driving investor confidence.

The Adrian Loveridge Column – LIAT Cost Up, Service Down

Our tourism planners have a major task ahead of them unless significant changes in terms of availability, connectivity and reduced cost for air travel within the Caribbean takes place.

On a recent return flight from Barbados to St, Maarten the price of my ticket was US$740 to attend the Caribavia conference. Making up this astronomical fare were the following non direct related airline costs:

Barbados Airport Service charge (BGI-ANU) – US$70; (second departure tax introduced October 2018); FIS – US$8.75; Security Service charge (BGI-ANU) – US$8.75; Barbados Passenger Service charge (first departure tax) – US27.50; Barbados Security Fee – US$3.20; Barbados Ticket Tax (Value Added Tax) – BGI-ANU – US$44.45; Barbados PFC (Passenger Facility Charge) – US$1.50 plus another Barbados Ticket Tax – (BGI-ANU) – US$33.60, totaling an amount of US$209 in Barbados Government charges.

To reach St. Maarten necessitated a change of aircraft in both directions at Antigua and a prolonged stop in Guadeloupe on the return, making the journey nearly four hours in each direction before adding check-in and delay times.

What immediately stands out is when the second departure tax (Airline Travel and Development Fee) was announced last year, it was clearly stated that travel within the region would be at the lower rate of US$35 and not the US$70 added to flights outside of the Caribbean, yet US$70 was charged, at least on my ticket (record locator ACR73R).

Also, we are currently one of the only countries within the region to pay VAT (Value Added Tax) for flights emanating from Barbados, so both the outward and return carry the17.5 per cent levy on the base return fare total of US$466 which amounts to US$78.

While the future, (if there is one) of LIAT (1974) Ltd lies in the balance, any new majority owner and operator has to take a long and careful look at every single route and its average loadings.

On my flight we had a stop in Guadeloupe which was delayed supposedly by an additional security check. This is difficult to understand as apart from the lengthy conversation the private security personnel had with the flight attendants, only around 5 minutes were spent inspecting the interior of the aircraft.

The delay though of 35 minutes plus was long enough to disgorge just 7 passengers and take on another 5 plus one infant. Sufficient time however to ensure all the vast majority of people left onboard were made hot and sweaty on the plane for their onward journey due to the lack of provision of any auxiliary ventilation.

Just how cost effective delivering and collecting such a tiny number of passengers, when taking landing fees and other costs levied into consideration certainly needs to be investigated, especially when other carriers operate on the same route with either one or no stops.

Of course these are all questions that any serious management should have been asking for decades, prior to pumping millions of taxpayer’s dollars into the airline.

The Adrian Loveridge Column – Tourism is Our Only Hope

As we edge apparently aimlessly towards an inevitable general election there appears, at least through my eyes, little or no compulsion to place my X on the ballot paper of any wannabe politician in my constituency. We have only seen our current representative twice in over ten years, a onetime visit to our property and the second at a popular Bridgetown café.

We still await a VAT refund amounting to tens of thousands of dollars due since February 2013 despite having a single year’s Municipal Solid Waste Tax demand with added interest and penalties, even though we have absolutely no state garbage collection. Of course we would be happy to offset this (excluding interest) against any outstanding government dues including land taxes, although not yet payable, but just try and get a response from the Barbados Revenue Authority or its principals.

They seem to think they have absolutely no accountability or obligation to reply to the people paying their salaries.

And in the tourism sector there are still so many unresolved issues including the hundreds and more likely thousands of unregistered and unlicensed accommodation operators trading outside of the required criteria that the others are forced to comply with.

Will any new administration push this pressing matter onto the back burner and ignore the previous work done if elected, or will the long overdue process be forced to start over again with another potential delay of ten years or more? Are ‘we’ really waiting for some yet unknown public relations nightmare to happen that could potentially indelibly help destroy our hard earned reputation as a destination?

What, if any, progress on the promised reduction of VAT and tax concessions on inputs to our standalone restaurants, when the chosen few have been given these trading advantages several years ago and in some individual cases unparallel 40 year, total or partial exemptions.

Our car rental sub-sector has also been forced to absorb massive increases in unbudgeted expenditure, including randomly imposed higher vehicle taxes and duties, the dreaded National Social Responsibility Levy and its 400 per cent increase, higher insurance premiums and let us not for a second, forget the additional damage and maintenance costs caused by the appalling state of our neglected road network.

What is indisputable is that the tourism industry provides the highest number of eligible voters together with their dependents of any sector.

Why do these aspiring politicians not seem to either understand, or wish to address these issues, at least in the hope of securing their votes?

While my little vote is a mere straw in the wind, just maybe there are enough other disillusioned persons out there to demand that at least one politician or party who can fully embrace the dynamics of tourism and its critical role in any possible recovery of our dire economy, hopefully over the next two or three generations.

What part of the phrase ‘tourism is an export’ do they not comprehend and which other major sector offers us any realistic hope of fiscal recuperation?

Time to REMOVE the VAT

Submitted by Wayne Cadogan

Now that the dust has settled regarding the National Social Responsibility Levy (NSRL) I would like to add my two cents to the debate. All countries have always had to depend on taxes to run their country and clearly, the Value Added Tax (VAT) did not accomplish what it was intended to do. The main reason why it failed is because the government did not have total control and several businesses refused to pay the VAT after collecting it. If it was being efficiently collected, there would be no need to create the NSRL tax.

Now that a tax has been implemented which affects everybody and that businesses cannot get away with ‘murder’ as they were accustomed, they will continue to cry out because they all have to pay the NSRL up front now that the government has greater control over its collection.

My advice to the Minister of Finance and the government, now that you have a cash cow and sound method of everybody paying the NSRL tax, remove the 17.5 VAT tax completely and increase the NSRL tax to 15% and this would ease the burden on the taxpayers and the guaranteed tax collection from all, especially the businesses and more so those unscrupulous business owners.

While I am at it concerning taxes and that the country is faced with all sorts of people dumping their garbage all over the country, especially the gullies and other places. I would like to suggest to the government that they impose a 2% waste disposable levy on all large, small appliances and electronics.  This way the owner pays up front for the disposable when it is no longer functional and has to be disposed of.

I would hope that since the country is about to move into election mode that the current government does not wait until the last minute of the silly season to drop such a ploy on the people of Barbados such as dropping taxes to confuse the masses as they did the last election with the old woman and the bus advertisement.

The Grenville Phillips Column – Berries for the Boys

Grenville Phillips II, leader of Solutions Barbados

The Government needs tax revenue in order that we may all benefit from Government managed health, education, road maintenance, police, fire, and other services.  Therefore, we should all pay our taxes.  If we do not pay our taxes, then the Government must unfairly burden another group with additional taxes to make up the difference – this group is normally the middle-class.  The alternative is to restrict the provision of these services.

Those who refuse to pay taxes compete unfairly in Barbados’ economy, since they can offer their products at a lower cost than their tax-paying competitors.  In an attempt to reduce the unfairness in the system, the Government has insisted that tax-clearance certificates, which prove that all taxes have been paid, must be obtained in order to participate in certain sectors of Barbados’ economy.

The Minister of Finance must be commended for this attempt to ensure fairness in Barbados’ economy, because a fair economy facilitates economic growth, which can help to solve our now dire economic problems.  Since we can all benefit from a growing economy, I hope that the Ministry of Finance will seriously consider this improvement to his initiative.

Those who owe the Government taxes fall into one of two categories: those who have the money to pay, and those who do not.  The tax-clearance requirement is an appropriate response to those who have the capacity to pay, but choose not to.  However, this requirement can harm the national economy by closing highly competent and competitive businesses, who do not have the capacity to pay. The obvious question is: if they are so competent and competitive, why can’t they pay their taxes?  Let me try to explain.

A fair economy is one where everyone has an equal opportunity to participate.  This means that Government contracts are open to all Barbadian companies, and the winner is selected by competitive tender.  The national economy becomes corrupted when Government contracts are given to persons and companies who fund political campaigns.

There has always been a sub-set of Barbados’ economy called the ‘political economy’, which is reserved for persons who fund political campaigns and expect Government contracts in return.  It is generally understood by all experienced persons in the market-place, that a few ‘berries’ must be reserved for ‘the boys’. Once this corrupt political economy remains small, then its impact on the national economy is negligible.  However, there is a tipping point when the size of the political economy grows to negatively affect the national economy.

Barbados passed that tipping point decades ago.  The likely time was identified by Moody’s 2009 downgrade report as 20 years ago.  To be charitable, politicians may be oblivious to the damage that distributing these ‘berries’ has on the national economy.  Ironically, the damage that they are inflicting on the national economy today, will result in a future Government being unable to pay their lucrative lifetime pensions later.

Those who are given no-bid Government contracts do not need to attend to their professional development, unlike their competitors who must compete in the market-place.  Those shielded from competition tend to become the least competent, and the least likely to successfully compete in Barbados’ economy.  The damage to Barbados’ economy is measureable when these less competent companies provide substandard products (goods and services), which require unnecessarily frequent maintenance and premature replacement.

When the replacement work is given to another politically favoured company that is protected from competition, then the public may pay many times over for the same product.  Taxpayers generally hope to be unburdened from this inefficient wastage when the political party is finally voted out of Government.  However, such hopes are normally dashed when the incoming political party interprets their win as simply their turn at the trough.  Be assured that a Solutions Barbados administration will definitely not continue this practise.

When Government decides who wins in Barbados’ economy, it automatically decides who loses.  By repeatedly choosing the most incompetent companies as winners, and the most competent as losers, the Government does significant damage to the national economy that can take over a decade to repair.  For those entrusted to carefully manage our national economy, to treat it with such damaging recklessness is highly irresponsible.

Since Barbados’ economy is not fair and has become corrupted, it is entirely reasonable for the Government to demand tax-clearance certificates from those whom it has sheltered from competitors and given no-bid contracts.  However, many companies that the Government has declared to be losers simply cannot afford to pay the taxes owed, for the simple reason that the Government has limited their participation in the national economy.  It is unconscionable that the Government would now demand tax-clearance certificates from them.
The Government needs tax revenues, but it has corrupted Barbados’ economy to the point where it has been structurally damaged for the past 20 years.  Fortunately, the Government can easily make things right.

First, it can demand taxes from all of those whom it declared to be winners in Barbados’ economy.  Second, it can abolish the practice of handing no-bid contracts (or berries) to political supporters.  Third, it can declare a general forgiveness of all taxes owed to Government for those it has automatically declared to be losers.  Only then can the Minister of Finance reasonably demand tax-clearance certificates from everyone.

Grenville Phillips II is the founder of Solutions Barbados and can be reached at NextParty246@gmail.com

“No equity about a tax”

Margaret Sivers, Revenue Commissioner

Margaret Sivers, Revenue Commissioner

BU followed some of the debate to the Barbados Revenue Authority (Amendment) Act 2017 this week and wondered why the government waited so long to implement measures to make tax collection more efficient. If we are to enjoy services financed by from the public purse taxpayers must pay their taxes. Who likes to pay taxes anyway.

Of concern to BU however is why does government continue to ignore the leaking foreign exchange where well respected companies operating in Barbados do NOT bring all foreign dollars earned onshore. This scam has been ongoing for decades and is known to successive government.

The following Barbados Advocate Editorial is therefore of interestBarbados Underground

“In a taxing statute one has to look merely at what is clearly said. There is no room for any intendment. There is no equity about a tax. There is no presumption as to a tax. Nothing is to be read in, nothing to be implied. One can only look at the language used.” –per Rowlat J in Cape Brandy Syndicate v IRC (1921) [Emphasis added]

Despite its patently significant contribution to the national welfare, the idea of taxation proves nettlesome to most persons. Hence, whether through the criminalized mode of tax evasion or that of the more licit tax avoidance, citizens try to arrange their affairs so that they themselves pay, or that these affairs attract, the least tax possible.

Therefore, when a taxpayer is required to produce documentary evidence of having fully complied with his or her tax liabilities and thus made their contribution to the national purse, he or she may instinctively baulk at this “imposition”, more particularly so when it is stipulated as a necessary precondition to conducting some activity or other that was thitherto regarded as a natural freedom of the individual.

Such was the popular reaction to the governing administration when it sought to pass the Barbados Revenue Authority (Amendment) Act 2017 in the Lower Chamber on Tuesday of this week.

Essentially, this piece of legislation, as others elsewhere, seeks to require a person that is desirous of making a disposition of land by conveyance or lease to another or of making application for the renewal of a liquor licence, to obtain a tax clearance certificate from the Revenue Commissioner order to facilitate and legitimize the transaction. Ideally, all taxes, including those assessable under the Excise Tax Act, the Income Tax Act, the Land Tax Act and the Value Added Tax Act respectively should have been paid in order to obtain the requisite certificate.

Some allowance is made, however, for the delinquent taxpayer that has paid not less than 10% of the tax due (including interest and penalties) and has executed an agreement with the Barbados Revenue Authority for the purpose of making scheduled payments to liquidate the further outstanding sums.

Naturally, there has been much negative reaction to this. The Oppositions claims that it is outright unconstitutional, while a statement from the Bar association asserts “mischief” and “constitutional implications” in that there is an absence of a provision for due process for the taxpayer to object to the sum of tax assessed by the Authority as owed to the Crown.

This latter objection is not without some merit, although, as the Honourable Prime Minister intimated during the debate, a finding of unconstitutionality is a matter for the court and not for mere assertion.

We consider that a simple resolution of this matter lies in having the Revenue Authority first provide each applicant for a certificate with an assessment of unpaid taxes. The applicant would then be free to object to that assessment within a stated period, failing which the applicant will be held to have accepted its conclusiveness. Thereafter, the certificate would, or would not, be issued accordingly.

The governing administration rightly stresses the need for citizens to pay their taxes if we are to continue to enjoy those entitlements that we have come to regard as the fundamental rights of Barbadians. The social contract is dependent on each party duly performing its part. This new initiative will create for some a conflict between civic duty and selfish personal ambition. May we all be mature and selfless enough to fulfill our tax obligations for the sake of the nation that has given us so much.

Vat Recall

Submitted by Phoenix

BLP promises to rollback VAT to 15%

Barbados was introduced to an increase in Value Added Tax on 1st December 2010  by Minister of Finance Chris Sinckler. According to the economic review of the first six months of 2012 released by the Central Bank of Barbados in July 2012, provisional estimates for the 2011-2012 fiscal year are that VAT brought in BDS$949.6 million dollars into the Treasury. On a whole, VAT contributed BDS$764.8 million of the BDS$1.2 billion in indirect taxes taken in by government last year – Read more.

The leader of Her Majesty’s Opposition, Mr. Owen. Arthur, at the recent BLP Convention held in the Queens Park, informed all, of a sure reversal of the 2.5 % Vat increase,  when his party wins the next elections. This revelation has already left many DLP supporters in shock and awe, for they know such relief would only spell  their demise. This welcomed and empathic committal, would take much of the burdensome strain off the backs of the  people, and will bring true meaning to the DLP’s empty rant. “A community, not  just an economy.”

So why is it that the DLP on coming to power, back in January 2008, with Foreign Reserves to the tune of $2.4 Billon, found it necessary two years later, to slap on a 2.5% increase in Vat? Not only did they collect an additional $100 Million approx. each year for four (4) years, but there was also the jaunty boast by the Minister of Finance Sinckler of $120 Million collected in excess last year. Excessive collections at the expense of increased unemployment, increased food prices, poor quality drugs and an overall decline in the standard of living of all Barbadians. Today, it begs the question was the increase really necessary? Why is it that we are seeing all the large scale extraction of monies from the people, yet no commensurate asset worth to show?

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The Method of Taxation, An Illegal Undertaking By Government

Submitted by The People’s Democratic Congress (PDC)

Flashback to The PDC demonstrating outside BL&P

Having in the last PDC submission illuminated, to some extent, the close relationships between the Taxation policy of the government, and the financial policy of both the government and the financial private sector in Barbados, we now take this opportunity to use this column, this time around, to effect the five following goals.

  1. To state categorically that government CANNOT TAX money (only INCOMES, PAYMENTS, TRANSFERS)
  2. To prove once again that there are many fundamental differences between money and nominal income, nominal wages, etc
  3. To attempt to convince as many people as possible in Barbados that there are definite casual relationships between TAXATION policy and increased mass suffering and misery that is taking place among the broad masses and middle classes of people of this country.
  4. To show once again that inflation is a bogus false economic concept
  5. To give BU visitors and readers and some members of the Barbadian electorate another opportunity to gain a little more insight and understanding of the very profound rationalizations and syncretisations behind this very liberating powerful political philosophy of NO-TAXATION

Under this virtually centralized nominal TAXATION process in Barbados the government of Barbados CANNOT TAX money – coins, bills, and cards. It cannot therefore TAX 1 cent, 5 cent, 10 cent, 25 cent, 1 dollar, 2 dollars, 5 dollars, 10 dollars, 20 dollars, 50 dollars, 100 dollars, either in themselves or altogether.

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Owing Taxes

Submitted by People’s Democratic Congress

The notion that “more than $200 million is said to be OWED to Government in VAT and Income Tax by several major enterprises, professional, and business people” (Weekend Nation, Friday, February 11, 2008), is absolute rubbish.

The principal reason why we in the PDC make this criticism is because the government has long been STEALING (TAXING) on a daily basis countless portions of the incomes of those enterprises, professional and business people that are referred to in the Weekend Nation newspaper story, as well as it has been STEALING (TAXING) on an every day basis countless more portions of the incomes of thousands of other people and entities  in this country.

Whilst the PDC will not get side tracked by that $ 200 million figure, the fact of the matter is that none of those people/entities, as well as no one else in this country OWES the government any amount of TAXATION, or anything in TAXATION at any time. None of them or none of us in the general publics of this country OWES  NOT ONE RED CENT to the government of Barbados in TAXATION!!! For, you owe nothing to a thief.

If anything it is the damn government that owes every TAX VICTIM in this country a fundamental duty to stop/to cease violating the income and property rights of our people as well as our businesses, owing to the unvarnished fact that our incomes are our incomes and NOT the government’s. And, if any thing too it is the government that OWES businesses and OWES its own workers for business and work done for it, and that must therefore make sure that these persons are compensated by fair means, e.g. by making sure that the money value of the people is utilized for such purposes, and NOT by stealing from the general income of the relevant individuals, businesses and others in this country.

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Beginning A No -Taxation Campaign

Submitted by People’s Democratic Congress (PDC)


Thursday, 25 November, 2010, marked the beginning of the  People’s Democratic Congress’s No-Taxation Campaign in Barbados.

This No-Taxation Campaign has been commenced to coincide with the intense anger and frustration by thousands of Barbadians at the draconian increases in TAXATION by DLP Minister of Finance, Mr. Chris Sinckler, in the 2010 Budgetary Proposals, that were delivered in the House of Assembly, on Monday, 22 November, 2010.

These increases in taxation, along with an increase in bus fares, have come at a time when the so-called Barbados economy has achieved  its third straight year of political economic  recession, with unemployment on the increase, the cost of living/doing business continuing to go through the roof, the foreign reserves on the decline,  the fiscal deficit of government reaching very unmanageable proportions, and the gross government debt becoming of greater albatrossic dimensions.

In the face of these great and recurrent crises in the fiscal affairs of government, and in the affairs of the material and production affairs of this island, we have collected, again, enough evidence that TAXATION is directly involved in these destructive crises.

In the case of disarray in the fiscal affairs of government wherefore the size of the government  has become far too big and unwieldy, and the cost of the operations and debt of government having become unsustainable, muchly beyond the means available to the government to support these undesirable happenings,  it is exceedingly clear that this wicked evil unproductive TAXATION system is the major source of these very grievous problems that are found within a thoroughly unproductive government sector.

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Dismantling The Barbados Tax Model

Submitted by the People’s Democratic Congress (PDC)

This week’s PDC contribution deals with another set of reasons why there must be large-scale lawful political opposition and street protests in Barbados in the foreseeable future by the relevant masses and middle classes of people, and by the relevant businesses and other entities and their respective supporters,  against the government’s continued wholesale stealing and robbing of countless portions of their incomes (TAXATION) in evil violation of the Holy Biblical Eighth Commandment, and in  diabolical transgression of the  income and property rights of such people, businesses and other entities in this fair land.

So, as it stands therefore, there is enough wisdom and knowledge out here in Barbados and across the internet right now to indicate that the government knows exactly that what it is doing IS  TOTALLY  WRONG  AND ABOMINABLE  in terms of its unrighteous TAXING of the relevant portions of the incomes of the relevant people, businesses and many other entities in Barbados (or otherwise THE  STEALING FROM/THE  ROBBING  OF the relevant portions of the general income of the relevant people, businesses and many other entities in this country).

Too, the government must know that TAXATION has long had very severe, profound, and disabling social, political, psychological, material, financial and other effects on esp. the broad masses and middle classes of people in this country, and on the proper growth and development of the country as a whole.

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BDS$93.73 In Taxes

Submitted by Adrian Loveridge

airport-crowdBook a month in advance and the taxes on a ONE-WAY ticket with LIAT to St. Lucia from Barbados amount to BDS$93.73 alone, and that doesn’t include the US$16.75 fuel and insurance surcharge.

Why is it that the Government is calling on the private sector tourism industry to protect employment and safeguard jobs and yet they appear to be deaf to the overwhelming calls to reduce taxes on intra regional travel?

Despite the Caribbean currently being the third largest source of long stay visitors to Barbados, and this could well change due to restricted air travel caused by the Swine Flu epidemic, it still is treated as the ‘Cinderella’ of our major markets.

With ongoing subsidies of up to US$300 per passenger, plus all the extra costs associated with the Best of Barbados programme in the United States, the least per capita BTA marketing spend is on the Caribbean, despite it producing the highest return on investment. Continue reading