Friday, March 25, 2011

Belize GST on Fuel Replaced by New Custom Duty

In listening to the Prime Minister’s budget presentation and subsequent budget debate, it is noted with interest that the GST (general sales tax) as applied on fuel was replaced by a revised/new custom duty (in lieu of the 12.5% GST). It is my understanding that this change has been implemented.

While this may result in a somewhat lower cost of fuel for some business owners, for others it may result in a higher cost of doing business for Business Owners via being unable to claim and offset the GST paid . Specifically, this is because for those qualifying business (prior to the implementation of the new import duty) they were able to claim the GST paid on fuel as an input credit against the GST collected (output). For those businesses with a high fuel use, this may negatively impact business operations and cash flow via the elimination of the GST input tax credit on fuel.

To the best of my knowledge the new/revised custom duty will be not be recoverable.

Could this be a clever way of plugging the budget  deficit?

Wilfred Rhaburn, CPA
Managing Partner                                   
W. Rhaburn Consulting

63 Barrier Reef Drive
San Pedro Town
Ambergris Caye, BELIZE

Tel: +501 610 4407
Fax:+501 226 4438
P.O. Box: Unit 540, Quicksilver Messenger Service