Mark Titus, Gleaner Writer
DAVON CRUMP, president of the Montego Bay Chamber of Commerce and Industry, has said the business community in western Jamaica is unable to absorb the recent increases and will have no choice but to pass these on to the consuming public.
"The business community is disheartened and concerned at the recent announcement by the Minister of Finance of the proposed tax increases," Crump told The Gleaner on Tuesday.
"We cannot sustain a viable business environment with this kind of seemingly irrational increase, and need to see a much more reasonable plan coming from the ministry," added Crump.
"No importer or investor will be willing to embrace these costs on their own. The sad thing is that, this will have to be passed on to the consumer, many of whom are already struggling to make ends meet." continued the chamber boss.
"As the umbrella organisation for businesses, we speak for all the sectors in the region, which are now in a quandary as to how these new figures were arrived at. We are therefore calling upon the Government to immediately review this discriminatory measure and give us the rationale for this horrendous increase," argued Crump.
The new tax measures, which became effective this month, were taken to support the achievement of the primary balance of payment of 7.5 per cent of Gross Domestic Product.