Cabinet to consider Discounted Vat Rate Period for this year

Shoppers are seen here taking advantage of a previous VAT Rate Discount Day.
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BASSETERRE, St. Kitts — The Cabinet of St. Kitts and Nevis is expected to begin discussions on the Discounted VAT (Value Added Tax) Rate period for 2020. A discounted rate from the 17 percent VAT is typically offered in December to boost consumer spending during the Christmas and Carnival season.

“We will give it some consideration,” said Prime Minister Dr. the Honourable Timothy Harris in response to a question by a caller during the October 6, edition of Leadership Matters.

Policymakers have been focused on dealing with the ongoing economic and social fallout of the COVID-19 global Pandemic. October is a key month for St. Kitts and Nevis as the borders are scheduled to reopen in a phased way to regional and international travellers since closing seven months ago.

However, the prime minister said that in fairness to the public, who have become accustomed to the seasonal stimulus measure, he will allow formal discussions on a reduced VAT rate at the next Cabinet meeting slated on October 12.

“I want to advise that we are in a difficult time where cash flows are limited and therefore the kind of benefits that we would have offered in a season of high inflows would not normally and could not be prudently be made available,” said Dr. Harris.

St. Kitts and Nevis enjoyed two Discounted VAT Rate Days in 2019. The VAT Rate offered on December 13 and 21 last year was five percent.

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