Basseterre, St. Kitts – In addition to passing four instrumental pieces of legislation on Monday, November 20, 2023, the National Assembly of St. Christopher and Nevis also adopted a resolution giving approval to the Government’s special Value Added Tax (VAT) reduction measures.
The Resolution, which was moved by the Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, the Honourable Dr. Terrance Drew, signals the government’s commitment to bringing significant financial relief to the people of St. Kitts and Nevis.
The Resolution reads:
Whereas it is provided by Section 27.2 of the Value Added Tax Act that the Minister may calculate the rates of tax at such other rates as the Minister may by order specify and that such order shall be the subject to the affirmative resolution of the National Assembly. And whereas the Ministry of Finance considers it expedient to introduce a measure to create a fiscal stimulus. Now be it resolved therefore that the National Assembly of St. Christopher and Nevis hereby affirms the order of the Minister of Finance to reduce the rate of VAT (a) on 15th December and 16th December 2023, to a rate of five percent on all sales of VATable goods commencing from 12:01 a.m. to 11:59 p.m. on each day, and (b) from the 19th September 2023 to 31st December 2024, to a rate of 13 percent on eligible building materials for first-time homeowners and for home renovations and repairs.
Prime Minister Dr. Drew said, “As you can see Madame Speaker, this Resolution does a number of critical things to bring relief to the people of St. Kitts and Nevis. First, by having two additional days, meaning we would have had [Reduced VAT] days before during this year, and also to recognize that to stimulate the construction industry we are reducing VAT on building materials. Because of inflation, the cost of building has gone up significantly and this government understands that, and that is why we have sought to reduce the VAT down to 13 percent.”
Prime Minister Dr. Drew acknowledges the impact of lower VAT rates on government revenue but emphasizes the significant benefits expected from this decision.
Dr. Drew added, “We want our first time house owners to be able to have an affordable home. That is why we have come with a number of critical measures. For example, you can look at National Bank and their HOME initiative where they have a number of facilities to help our people to get affordable mortgages so that they can get the home that they desire. Madame speaker, here in St. Kitts and Nevis, we have started our Housing Revolution with two model homes being built , one in Conaree and one in Taylor’s, with new technology that is on the way already. This gives our people a greater opportunity to own a home.”
The Resolution on the special VAT reductions was adopted with the full support from the Members of Parliament.