11 Apr 2007

Major investments in Fiji on hold because of tax demands

7:06 am on 11 April 2007

Hotel projects worth more than 300-million US dollars are reported to be on hold in Fiji, because of demands for advance tax assessments by the Fiji Revenue and Customs Authority.

Fiji TV reports that the 100-million US dollar Momi Bay Resort near Nadi and other hotels disagree with the Authority's interpretation of tax laws that it can make advance tax assessments on sales before income is derived.

As a result, hundreds of jobs are on the line.

The Fiji Trade and Investment Bureau says its aim is to speed up implementation of projects so that jobs can be created and benefits derived.

A Bureau spokesman Viliame Volavola, says they are trying to resolve issues quickly so that investor confidence is not dampened and Fiji's image as an investor friendly country is not damaged.

But, the Revenue and Customs Authority insists that it can demand advance tax assessments even before investment projects get off the ground.