No new taxes, please.
That is the plea chief executive officer of the Barbados Private Sector Association (BPSA) Ann Reid is making to Government.
Reid told Barbados TODAY that any new taxes at this time would have a negative impact on businesses and households across island. She said what the private sector needed instead was a better enabling environment.
Her sentiments came ahead of the Budget expected to be presented soon by Minister of Finance Chris Sinckler.
The tax plea also came on the heels of a similar call over the weekend from the Barbados Chamber of Commerce and Industry which also urged Government to maintain tax concessions and allowances for investments and accelerate VAT refunds to businesses, among other measures.
Reid said while she understood that Government wanted to raise revenue so it could pay its bills, it would not be wise to do so through the imposition of new taxes on businesses.
“So [the question] is really ‘how do we find that balance?’ and this is why we come back to opportunities where we have to look to new avenues to do business and trade, because the domestic conditions are such that in order to be able to grow and develop . . . you really need to go out into the market and be more innovative,” she said.
“That is the only way we are going to do it because otherwise we will find that with the Government needing to raise revenue . . . if they are not getting what is needed then there may be more taxes. We are saying that any more taxes being introduced would really have the law of diminishing returns response.”
Reid said private sector operators needed more dialogue with Government and stakeholders needed to “come together and decide how we can go forward”.
The BPSA head said there were “some pressing matters” that the private sector was focused on, including business survival in the current economic climate.