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NDM joins in opposing bank withdrawal tax

Published:Sunday | April 20, 2014 | 12:59 PM

The National Democratic Movement (NDM) has joined the throng of voices opposing the newly announced tax on bank withdrawals.

The move was announced last Thursday by Finance Minister Dr Peter Phillips during his opening of the 2014/15 Budget Debate in Parliament. The initiative is expected to raise J$2.25 billion in revenue to finance the budget.

However, the NDM says the move sets a dangerous precedence. It says the Government should instead raise funds by reducing corruption and waste. The political party argues that corruption and waste represent about 40 per cent of the J$35 billion capital budget and there would be no need to raise taxes if the Government reduced corruption by 20 per cent.

The new withdrawal tax will be calculated on a graduated rate system, with withdrawals less than J$1 million being subject to a 0.1 per cent tax.

This means that Jamaicans will pay J$1 for every J$1,000 they withdraw from deposit-taking institutions through electronic banking, point of sale transactions, cheques, banking hall transactions, ATMs, and Internet transfers.

Only online transfers between accounts at the same financial institution will be exempt.


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