Tax Collections Up

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More people are paying their taxes and paying on time.

That’s how Tax Administration Jamaica, TAJ, is explaining a sizable increase in tax revenues in the latest report from the Economic Programme Oversight Committee, EPOC.

For years, a chunk of the country’s poor economic performance has been blamed on one thing… people just haven’t been paying their taxes.

Quarter after quarter, the reports showed missed revenue targets, old taxes and new taxes alike, underperforming: until now.

According to EPOC, GCT collections exceeded budget by nearly 10%

SCT on imports exceeded budget by 24%!

In fact, tax collection for April to May was $8.4 billion or nearly 17-percent higher than last year.

EPOC Co-Chair, Richard Byles, is surprised.

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But over at TAJ, officials are not shocked by the dramatic improvements.

They’ve been working hard to improve tax compliance.

Public Relations Officer Merris Haughton says it’s finally paying off.

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Just last week, the TAJ published the first ever National Compliance Plan, outlining all the measures they’re taking to get people to pay their taxes.

These include better customer service, more education programmes, and better use of technology.

As a result, Ms. Haughton says the April to May performance was no fluke.

She expects the trend to continue.

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The robust collections are expected to continue.