BASSETERRE, St. Kitts, Apr. 2.2018 – PREMIER, Mark Brantley has confirmed that the Nevis Island Administration (NIA) will ensure that all companies receiving government contracts are standing in good stead with their taxes and social security.
That comment comes against the backdrop of companies operating on the island without remitting any taxes to the NIA, while receiving government work.
But Brantley said: “The government will do business with those who are up-to-date and who are in a good position in relation to honouring their obligations.”
Acknowledging that in the past they knew that there were some people receiving government work without a business license and paying taxes, Brantley noted that it will not continue.
“That to my mind doesn’t make sense,” he said.
Brantley believes that if the government continues to support those people and businesses who do not do the right thing, then it will put an additional strain on others.
The non-payment of taxes is no secret in the federation, as the Inland Revenue Department on St. Kitts is in the process of publishing the names of defaulters.
That position has not yet been taken by the Nevis Island Administration, but Brantley warned that it could take a similar stance.
“The only way that we can provide all of that; provide security and do all the things we need to do as a government is certainly if our tax payers are to be responsible.”
As part of their procurement process going forward, the Nevis Island Administration will be asking questions of those contractors, whether they are up to date with their taxes and social security.
“For me that is important. Put that again also in the context of concession: we have found a lot of our developers – property developers – who are owing large amounts of taxes to the government but they keep coming to the government to say they are going to start other developments, and they want tax holidays and want all kinds of things – duty free, VAT free vehicles,” explained Brantley.
He said that they will streamline efforts with the view of having more persons honouring their obligations.