Last Updated on Thursday, 25 June 2020, 10:30 by Denis Chabrol
The Guyana government has granted a further extension to the timeline on the existing tax relief measures for affected individuals and businesses.
The Guyana Revenue Authority (GRA) said that decision was made “having carefully assessed the impact of COVID-19 on the economy to-date.”
In this regard, relief measures that were introduced in March and were scheduled to end on June 30, 2020, will remain in effect until September 30, 2020, the GRA said.
They are extension of the April 30th deadline for the filing of tax returns to September 30, 2020.
All affected businesses will now be allowed to pay advance taxes on the current year basis for the Year of Assessment 2021 (Year of Income 2020).
All other taxes are due and payable in accordance with the law. This includes Balance of Tax payments for Corporation Tax and Income Tax due for Year of Income 2019 which was payable by April 30, 2020.
Interest and penalties, though applicable for late filing and payment, may be waived by the Commissioner General for just cause.
The removal of VAT on Water, Electricity and Domestic Air Travel is extended to September 30, 2020.
Waiver of VAT, Duties and Excise taxes on all medical supplies associated with the testing, prevention and treatment of COVID-19 (complete list on GRA’s website) to September 30, 2020.
The granting of Tax deductions for all donations made by local businesses to the Ministry of Health.
Tax Deductions for donations to staff and other health institutions for the prevention and treatment of the virus are allowed to the extent as determined by the Commissioner-General.
“The GRA again wishes to notify and to emphasise that individuals and companies not affected by COVID-19, will be required to comply with the statutory due dates for the payment of taxes,” the tax agency said.
Among the administrative measures taken in an effort to provide some level of comfort to the taxpaying public during this pandemic, the GRA established early working hours at its Camp Street Headquarters and recently re-located some of its Licence Revenue services to its Smyth Street building. The relocated services are Motor Vehicle Transfers, New Motor Vehicle Registration, Motor Vehicle Examination and cashiering.
An external station was also set up at the Guyana Post Office Corporation (GPOC) for payments for Internal Revenue, VAT, Customs transactions and Motor Vehicle licences. Additionally, a drop box is available for persons to submit their returns.
The GRA says it will soon be facilitating a drive-thru facility at its Lamaha Street Parking Lot for persons to uplift their licences after completing the application/renewal and online payment procedure.
The public is further advised that the Authority will continue to strictly monitor visits to the office and will only allow a limited number of persons to enter the building with the protocols of mandatory body temperature checks, the wearing of masks and the sanitising of hands, remaining in effect