Basseterre, St. Kitts (CUOPM) — With the improvement in the St. Kitts and Nevis economy, Prime Minister the Rt. Hon. Dr. Denzil L. Douglas announced to the nation Wednesday, the removal of Value Added Tax (VAT) from what he called “A Family Shopping List of Goods” in another effort to control the cost of living.
“The Family Shopping List of Goods will now attract zero payment of import duty and the Value Added Tax upon import into the Federation,” announced Prime Minister Douglas at hs monthly press conference.
Dr. Douglas noted that in 2010, St. Kitts and Nevis joined some 150 nations around the world which had already implemented the Value Added Tax.
He added that it was essential to the stabilisation of the economy and it has contributed significantly to the very positive performance ratings that St. Kitts and Nevis has since received.
“The Government is now in a position to remove the VAT from certain items, and I am pleased to share with you today the “Family Shopping List of Goods” on which, from today forward, there will be zero VAT paid,” said Prime Minister Douglas.
He disclosed that the “Family Shopping List of Goods” is divided into three parts: Health and Hygiene; Balanced Diet, and Childcare and Education.
“The health and hygiene items that will be zero VAT-rated are: detergent, bleach, disinfectant, adult pampers, sanitary napkins, bathroom tissue, shampoo, mouthwash, body lotion, deodorant, toothpaste, soap, insecticides, rodenticides, and mosquito coils. Significantly, medicines in St. Kitts and Nevis are to be zero-rated for VAT. In other words, no VAT should ever be charged on medicines. Yet persons have reported that some pharmacists and other retailers have been charging VAT on medicines. This should not be, and any person who is charged VAT on medicines should both strongly protest to the retailer involved, as well as lodge a complaint with the Ministry of Consumer Affairs,” said Prime Minister Douglas.
The balanced diet items that will be zero VAT-rated are: peas, beans, and other legumes; coconut oil, corn oil, canola oil, sunflower oil, olive oil; turkey, pork, oxtail, sausages, mutton, lamb, beef, cereals, powdered drinks, fresh or frozen chicken; fresh, chilled, or frozen hams, shoulders and cuts with bone; pig tails, ears, and snout; canned salmon, mackerel, herring, sardines, and salt fish; cheese, vegetable oils, margarine, shortening, lard; canned sausages, canned corned beef; sardinella and brisling or sprats; tomato ketchup, tuna, pasta, skipjack, and bonito.
The childcare and education items that will be zero VAT-rated are: fruit and vegetable infant juices; baby diapers; and exercise books.
“These concessions will be of direct benefit to us all. Now that our economy has stabilized, the Government is very pleased to be in a position to provide them,” Prime Minister Douglas said.