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Chamber welcomes PM’s comments on gas prices, calls for crack down on tax evaders

Posted: Tuesday, October 3, 2017. 4:46 p.m. CST.

By BBN Staff: The Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BCCI), in a release this evening, welcomed Prime Minister Dean Barrow’s recent public assurance that fuel prices at the pump will drop by mid-October with the arrival of the next shipment.

“With taxes comprising up to 43% of end prices to the consumer, Government is in the best position to manage pump prices for the benefit of every consumer and every economic activity,” the Chamber said.

BCCI also urged the government to formalize a long-term fuel pricing policy as part of a comprehensive and well-thought-out tax strategy. “Such a policy would ease the burden on consumers and the private sector, and would promote local business, investment, and spending,” the Chamber said.

It also added that government must crack down on tax evaders and collect the millions of dollars lost in revenue each year.

“The time is now to seriously examine a national tax reform strategy to revise the various tax regimes and design them to support investment, encourage job creation and facilitate exports. These reforms should integrate taxes and simplify compliance to ensure evaders have neither reason nor incentive. It is time to ease the tax burden on compliant businesses while dissuading and penalizing evasion and corruption. The BCCI stands ready to support any initiative in this regard,” the Chamber said.

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