Categorized | National News

Govt to Reduce VAT

Holding firm to its campaign promise to reduce value-added tax (VAT) on bread and basket items, the Free National Movement (FNM) government assured this will be one of numerous items on the agenda executed.

Throughout the campaign trail, Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis charged that this was one way his government would ensure that all Bahamians, especially those within the inner city, are empowered and can function economically.

According to Dr. Minnis, this is the group of Bahamians that the former Progressive Liberal Party administration failed to assist.

These plans were reiterated at the opening of Parliament yesterday during the reading of the Speech from the Throne by Governor General Dame Marguerite Pindling.

“My government will launch a programme of Real Property Tax discounts and rebates for pensioners 65 or over who qualify,” Dame Marguerite said.

“My government will enact legislation to provide for a ‘rent-to-own’ programme to facilitate home ownership. We will continue the development of new government housing subdivisions to address unmet demands for truly affordable housing,”

“My government will continue the regularization of long term unauthorized occupation of Crown Lands for individuals and families. We will also make available, Crown Land to qualified Bahamians at concessionary rates.”

Also coming out of the Speech from the Throne yesterday, the government is keen on reviewing legislation to ensure that adequate provisions exist for homeowners’ protection, adding that it will also encourage and empower absentee landlords to redevelop their ancestral lands and abandoned buildings.

“My government will create tax free economic zones in these areas to encourage business growth and spur job creation in the redevelopment phase and beyond. These zones will operate in a safe and clean environment with each zone addressing the socio-economic situation of the area, through tripartite arrangements with landlords, government and Bahamian investors,” Dame Marguerite said.

“My government will enact legislation which allows duty free concessions on all construction materials and building supplies used in the construction of business premises and new or refurbished owner occupied homes in these zones.”

Meantime, the government has not addressed areas regarding immigration and culture.

It is expected that what has been proposed will be debated in the budget next Wednesday in the House of Assembly.

Written by Jones Bahamas

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