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Guernsey To Look To Corporates For Higher Tax Take

by Jason Gorringe, Lowtax.net, London
10 March, 2016

Guernsey's Minister for Treasury & Resources, Gavin St Pier, has said proposals are being investigated to boost Guernsey's tax take, in particular from corporates.

In recent comments before policymakers, after the territory posted a wider-than-expected deficit, St Pier said: "This Assembly made some important decisions this time last year surrounding the Personal Tax, Pensions, and Benefits review. 23 actions or programs of work are now being progressed by my Department and the Social Security Department as a result of resolutions made following the debate on those proposals. The completion of these important actions will help deliver a robust and sustainable personal tax base for the next decade and beyond. These include matters such as: secondary pensions, regarding which decisions have already been made; the withdrawal of income tax allowances for higher earners, which my Department is working on and on which we are expecting proposals in the 2017 Budget; and a policy regarding the future uplift in the old age pension, which was agreed last November."

He added: "My Department continues to progress other projects which seek to increase the tax contribution from the corporate sector as a means of producing a balanced and sustainable budget for presentation in November this year. A number of options and opportunities are being progressed, in consultation with industry and other jurisdictions as appropriate."

The Minister also made it clear that his Department has ceased consideration of a goods and services tax following the Assembly's earlier rejection of this proposal. Instead the Minister said that: "My Department's aim is to continue to seek to adjust and exploit opportunities within our current tax framework that will be internationally acceptable whilst ensuring that our economy remains internationally competitive."

The Minister also apologized to the Assembly for the failure of his Department to report back by March 2016 on the proposed introduction of environmental taxes. The Minister said that: "…the progression of this work has been hampered by a lack of resources; but it is our intention that this should be progressed sufficiently that a report on the matter is able to be included in the 2017 Budget. The joint Boards of Social Security and Treasury and Resources recently met to review progress on all actions and it is our intention to circulate an update to all States Members within the next week."

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