9 Nov 2002

Increase in Fiji's Value Added Tax causes wide concern

8:47 am on 9 November 2002

There's been wide-spread condemnation in Fiji of the government's decision to inrease Value Added Tax on all goods and services from 10 to 12 and a half per cent in the 2003 budget.

The Fiji Employers Federation says the increase will impact heavily on the man in the street and increase inflationary pressures.

The Fiji Labour party says the increase is a rip-off which will have a crippling effect while opposition leader, Mick Beddoes, says streamlining and restructuring the public service so it does not use up so much money would have been a far better option than raising the Value Added Tax.

The Public Service Association says the measure is anti poor and rich friendly and the Bank and Finance Sector Employees Union says the increase at a time when wages are stgnannt while worrsen the brain drain from Fiji.