Hinterland residents to benefit from removal of taxes on fuel
─major boost for the mining sector
Minister of Housing and Water, Hon. Collin Croal has assured hinterland residents that they are set to benefit from reductions in travel costs as the budgetary measures on fuel taxes have been streamlined.
During a recent visit to Barima-Waini (Region One), he reminded them that in September President Dr. Mohamed Irfaan Ali had announced provisions specific to hinterland travel.
“We committed that we will remove the tax and the VAT that is charged from the fuel that is coming into your Region. You will recall a few years ago, a charge of $5,000 was put on every barrel of fuel that was coming into this region,” Minister Croal said.
He explained that the “instruction has already been passed to the Commissioner-General of the Guyana Revenue Authority. So, very shortly you will see the administrative measures being put in place to ensure that charge is removed so that we can see the fuel price being brought down even further.”
This is expected to provide significant benefits for the mining industry, as the PPP/C Government aims to recapitalise the sector.
The Minister added that there were efforts to ensure the savings realised from VAT removal on air travel filters down to all levels. To this end, he said discussions are ongoing within the industry to see a reduction in ticket costs.
While mining is the main economic activity in the hinterland region, making flights more cost-friendly will boost tourism and especially sub-sectors such as local craft and hotel and accommodations.
Further, the expansion of the tourism industry will, in turn, boost job creation and entrepreneurship in hinterland and riverine communities.
“These are the sorts of commitment that we have made for your Region and for you as individuals, as citizens of this sub-region, so that we can make your life much more comfortable,” the Minister said.
In addition to the removal of VAT and reduction of duties on equipment to boost the mining sector and the removal of VAT on hinterland travel, the President also announced other budgetary measures that will benefit the hinterland. These are the removal of the requirement to register and take out road licence for miners; the removal of the provision that prohibited miners from transporting fuel in their vehicles and tax concessions for the mining, forestry, agriculture and manufacturing sectors.
Minister Croal, who also holds Parliamentary responsibility for the Region, told residents that crucial infrastructure works are also in store to boost their economy.