If all goes according to plan, Barbadians could be paying the promised 17.5 per cent online tax come early next year.
This update came from Minister in the Ministry of Finance Ryan Straughn, who said the Barbados Revenue Authority (BRA) was in the final stages of ironing out lingering concerns with online retailers.
“The BRA is in the process of finalizing with some of the larger online retailers, and please don’t hold me to this, but we anticipate that we should be in a position to have that implemented by the beginning of next year,” he told reporters at a recent media briefing.
The tax plan, which was announced in the June 2018 Budget as part of a suite of tax measures, was to begin in October last year but was initially delayed to December 1 and then to December 15.
Legislation was introduced this year to allow for the BRA to outsource tax-collecting powers to an online third party, and the measure was to then be introduced by July 1.
However, four months later, online shoppers are yet to see the 17.5 per cent Value Added Tax (VAT) charge on their online purchases.
Straughn said it was still a measure that would be implemented that should add to government’s revenue.
“It has taken longer than we anticipated but we should be in a position to have that started to roll out in January of 2020,” said Straughn.