Thu | Nov 15, 2018

No new taxes in upcoming budget – Shaw

Published:Friday | January 19, 2018 | 10:12 AM

Finance and the Public Service Minister Audley Shaw says no new taxes will be included in the 2018/19 budget.

He says revenue inflows have been doing fairly well this year, noting that the out-turn at the end of December 2017 was $13 billion ahead of projections.

He says with this trajectory, it is not the Government’s plan to introduce a new tax package in the new budget.

He was speaking at Mayberry Investments Limited’s monthly Investor Forum at The Knutsford Court Hotel in New Kingston, on Wednesday evening.

However, Shaw says the Government will focus on implementing non-tax initiatives to ensure that importers in particular pay their fair share at the wharves.

He says the Jamaica Customs Agency has been instructed to take the necessary steps to acquire the requisite modern state-of-the-art X-ray equipment to enable them to scan all incoming containers.

Meanwhile, Shaw advised that the Government plans to lobby the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to further reduce the Primary Surplus target.

The primary surplus is the minimum set aside in the budget for debt payments.

There have been suggestions from various quarters for the government to seek to have a relaxation of this target to facilitate improved wages for public sector workers.

The target had already been revised from 7.5 per cent to 7 per cent, and Shaw says he will be seeking to have this further reduced to 6.5 per cent.