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Friday 13 July 2018

The Parliamentary Bills and Legislation Committee (BLC) will commence enquiries into four new Bills, starting with the Goods Tax (Amendment) Bill 2018 today (Friday 13 July).

The Good Tax (Amendment) Bill 2018 is an Act enacted by the National Parliament of Solomon Islands to amend the Good Tax Act (Cap.122) in relation to the way the sale value of certain goods is calculated, and for other related purposes.

As stated in the Bill’s objects and reasons, there are strong concerns that persons registered for goods tax purposes are undervaluing goods at the wholesale level to pay less goods tax.

As a tax compliance measure, for goods imported into Solomon Islands, the sale value on which goods tax is applied will be set at an uplifted value to represent the mark-up at the wholesale level. The uplifted value is the customs value of the goods plus the amount of customs duty payable, all uplifted by 130%.

Currently the same uplifted value is used to charge goods tax on goods that are imported for home consumption by an unregistered person or a registered person who does not quote his certificate in respect of the entry.

The Commissioner of Taxation will still be responsible for the collection of Goods Tax from those registered for goods tax. Despite the proposed amendments to the sale value used to determine the goods tax payable on imported goods, the Commissioner will retain the power to determine and where necessary alter the sale value of the goods.

The Bill has 12 Clauses and witnesses that will appear before the BLC include, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Finance, the Commissioner of Inland Revenue, the Comptroller of Customs, the Legal Draftsperson, Solomon Islands Chamber of Commerce, Association of Clearance Agents, Chinese Association and Wholesalers Association.

BLC will also conduct hearings for another three new Bills in the coming weeks. These include the Development Bank of Solomon Islands (DBSI) Bill 2018, Payment System Bill 2018 and the Constitution (Amendment) (Dual Citizenship) Bill 2018.

Meanwhile, Parliament meeting will resume on Wednesday next week, after its last adjournment on Monday, April 9, 2018.