Caricom suspends tariff on several inputs for Guyanese manufacturers

Last Updated on Monday, 10 October 2016, 10:53 by Denis Chabrol

The Guyana Manufacturing and Services Association (GMSA) on Monday announced that the suspension of taxes and duties on several inputs now that the Caribbean Community (Caricom) but it would be pushing for the permanent removal of those items from the Common External Tariff (CET) list.

“The Guyana Manufacturing & Services Association GMSA, was pleased to be informed by its membership that with the necessary support from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and the CARICOM Secretariat, their application for the suspension of the import duties on the raw materials had been successful,” the GMSA said in a statement.

The single item rejected was Soya Bean Oil, based on an objection by Roberts Manufacturing in Barbados on the grounds that they are presently producing soya bean oil.

The GMSA said that would now be pushing for the eventual removal of those items from the Tariff list. “This fulfills the short term goals as reported previously by the GMSA. The long term goal of the Association is to work with the relevant agencies to have these ineligibles items along with many others removed from the list since many of them are no longer available in the region.”

The association explained that manufacturing companies which were faced with the enforcement of import duties on raw materials that appeared on the list of ineligible items were granted suspensions through the CARICOM Secretariat.

The GMSA said manufacturers were made aware of the enforcement regulation last April by the Guyana Revenue Authority. The list of ineligible items was developed in the late 70s early 80s and was designed to protect the CARICOM region. Many of the items were available in the region at that time and as such attracted import duties if they were imported.

The list of ineligible items is enshrined in the tax laws of Guyana and is also part of The Revised Treaty of Chagaramas.

The companies identified were:- Twins Manufacturing Chemists; Edward B. Beharry & Company Limited;  Sterling Products Limited; Umami & Toolsie Persaud Limited. Of the five (5) companies that had applied, four (4) of them were granted full suspension, while Sterling Products Ltd was granted full suspension for five (5) of the six (6) items they had applied for.

The GMSA thanked the relevant Ministers, Government Agencies and the CARICOM Secretariat for their support in bringing relief to our Manufacturers.