Sat | Jan 20, 2018

Shaw opens Budget Debate today

Published:Thursday | March 9, 2017 | 12:00 AMEdmond Campbell
Audley Shaw

Finance and the Public Service Minister Audley Shaw will today unveil revenue measures in the House of Representatives to fund the second phase of the personal income tax reform, which could cost taxpayers approximately $16 billion, or 0.9 per cent of gross domestic product.

The announcements are expected as the minister opens the 2017-18 Budget Debate in Gordon House.

Shaw has indicated in recent times that the Government would have to introduce tax measures to help finance the tax giveback.

Phase Two of the tax reform will see the threshold move to $1.5 million, beginning April 1, this year, the start of fiscal year 2017-18.

The parliamentary Opposition has argued that the administration is providing the benefit to taxpayers with one hand and pulling in taxes with the other.


Primary surplus target


Last year, the Government imposed $14 billion in taxes to fill the gap left by the tax break.

In July 2016, the personal income tax threshold jumped from $592,800 to $1,000,272.

In addition to the $16 billion that the Government will have to find to plug a gap in the budget, $11.4 billion is also needed to maintain the primary surplus target. The sum was sourced from the National Housing Trust for budgetary support under the previous agreement with the International Monetary Fund.