Noted real estate agent and developer of Limegrove Paul Altman has challenges Government to look beyond taxes and find more creative ways to generate much needed revenue.
Altman made the call as he was pressed by Barbados TODAY for comment on the likely impact of the controversial Municipal Solid Waste Tax on the real
Though reluctant to speak directly on the levy, Altman suggested the island could not handle any more taxes and that there were other possibilities the Government should pursue.
“I would just say that I think that we are stretched on the island and the general sense that I get from everyone, from those in the lower income to the higher income, people feel that we are being asked to cough up more than our fair share.
“I recognise that the Government needs funds and the island cannot survive without putting some revenue into the pot, but I would like to think we have other opportunities besides the solid waste tax to get Barbados to grow, to get a lot more revenue,” he said.
Altman proposed that the Government scrap duty free shopping to stimulate economic activity and increase its earnings.
He argued that the measure does not yield substantial income and the country could benefit more if it was not in place.
“It is my feeling in times such as these that the creative way to approach gaining more money for Government is by inviting people in to spend money, by removing such things as the duty free shopping because I think that is not really as beneficial as it may sound . . . If you remove that, you keep all the US and foreign currency here,” he told Barbados TODAY.
“I think more money can come in from the additional sales and employment and the activity in the retail trade.
“By removing duty free you will get more money than you will get from collecting the little amounts of duty that will come in. These are the types of things we need to be more creative . . . rather than being so direct about it. I am just thinking that we should all sit down and be a lot more creative and everyone will win.” Altman said.