Jagdeo condemns implementation of ‘Container fee’: says consumers will pay

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Opposition leader, Bharrat Jagdeo has condemned the move by the Georgetown Mayor and councilors to add a fee for the parking of containers along the city streets.

 

To address the issue of containers being left on city streets for long periods, business persons are being asked to pay GYD$25,000 for 72 hours parking and a penalty fee of $5000 for every other day the container is left parked in the public space.

 

Jagdeo told a Press Conference on Wednesday that he views this move as a strategy which goes against the business community.

 

“We have seen the surreptitious, the creeping mix of policies designed to bring further hardships to the business sector and so now we have in the city, the enforcement of a container tax that will add cost to business activities and ultimately will be passed on to the consuming public,” he said.

 

Further, he added that under his administration, the decision was also mulled, however, given the implications it will have on consumers, it was shelved.

 

Instead, he noted that “we contemplated container tax…there is this thing that people should pay for that service because it can destroy the roads, but this is why central government practically took over the construction of roads in the city. The city council did not construct roads.”

 

The opposition leader also condemned the Council’s recent indication that it will be moving to increase property taxes.

 

Jagdeo also spoke of the recent move by the GRA to implement import taxes on several raw materials which received an exemption for over 40 years. These commodities are ineligible for import tax exemptions under the revised Treaty of Chaguaramas.

 

However, the opposition leader stated that provisions were made in the Customs act and the Consumption Tax Act, “to say that registered manufacturers…they would be eligible through the issuance of …letters for a waiver on taxes on their inputs, the idea was that they will pay taxes on their outputs. If you’re to charge taxes on input…and output, they’ll be paying taxes twice.”

 

Asked how Guyana will be able to defend this position at the level of CARICOM, Jagdeo said it is practiced by many other countries and therefore a removal of the waivers on only Guyana’s part will put the local manufacturers at a disadvantage.

 

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