(Photo Credit: BVI Platinum News)
Premier and Minister for Finance Hon. Andrew Fahie is already counting the money that government will rake in from a new ‘Money Transfer Fee’, that is expected to be applied to funds sent from the Territory through services such as Moneygram and Western Union.
The Premier skirted quickly over the plan to introduce such fees during the presentation of the 2020 budget estimates on November 19 in the House of House Assembly by simply alluding to the introduction of the fee as he explained where his government will be getting additional money to meet budget plans.
“The strategy anticipates increased income through the exploration of new revenue generating initiatives which include collections from the implementation of a money transfer fees…”
This is not the first time that the Premier announced his government’s intent to tax services such as Moneygram and Western Union. He previously made this known during in the House of Assembly on July 31.
At that time Hon. Fahie stated, “We believe that people could send their money where they want. We just gonna put on a lil fee soon…”
“We have a Bill coming that going to allow us to …[put] just a little money on for anything that gets sent out. 20 percent will go to education, 20 percent going towards infrastructure, 20 percent going towards entrepreneurship and 20 percent going towards the consolidated fund,” he added.
At that time the Premier also promised that the public will have a say on that proposal.
“I will be bring it to the public to debate on. If you send your money out it’s a win ... and if you keep it here it’s a win. We like to create scenarios where there’s a win, win,” Hon. Fahie stated.
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Me AgainRaising / collecting “ revenue” is one thing : but ANOTHER TAX ? on poor people . These down people who send most of the $ out are met with so much “ red tape “ to open an account at the banks . Is “ wire transfers “ at the banks going to be TAXED also ? This is where / how the BIG $$ leave the Territory ; Food for thought
Sea And SandPremier Fahie that tax will be unconstitutional and discretionary.
I recommend that you look for new streams of revenue by directly taxing Properly Owners on their Leases and rents.
Furthermore put a levy on the funds that are being wired out of the Territory daily by the banks, trust companies, businesses and insurance companies etc.
Mash OneDo you want to tell me that people who come here have to pay these high taxes for work permits and pay nhi ,income tax and social security and what is left for them to send home to pay their bills back home to support their families,are you saying that they have to pay taxes on this.Come on people of the BVI .You all have no kind of conscious. The big companies who rape this territory you are not getting down on them.They don’t pay the government taxes they collect,now here you are taxing poor people taxes on their money that they have already paid taxes on.Then in bugect speech one can hear that there is no extra taxes imposed.This is so wrong.
ChristalThis seems to be specifically targeting caribbean nationals living here; and I hope that the rest of the region does take our Premier's shortsightedness as a sign of how the total BVI feels. He is constantly preaching regional unity but doing things like these that say otherwise.
Take a look at the lines outside of moneygram and western union and tell me who will be most affected. the rushed response that other people send money too would now cut it here because some of our other residents are known to prefer bank transfers and other electronic measures to send their funds away.
Oh I am from right here so bring on the deportation talk, because it seems every pro caribbean point must be from a down islander.
I remember our recently departed Premier Hon. Ralph O'Neal many years ago while he wore a different hat talking about this very thing. He announced that this fee or tax was never one that we should entertain because in our difficult years remittance was a big part of our economy.
I dont mind our government trying to get revenue, but at a time like this when our international relations are not the best we ought to be mindful what our actions are saying to the region we belong, and the ones that we are going to be leaning on.
I see the comment that other caribbean countries are doing it, but the relationship that they have with each other we are now trying to foster. Let us be strategic in our dealings as we venture forward to make BVI stronger and better. Leave this one alone. What you will make from it is not worth what we may lose if BREXIT etc occurs.