1 Sep 2016

New Caledonia poised for tax reform

9:13 am on 1 September 2016

New Caledonia's Congress is due to debate a comprehensive tax reform.

The key aspect is a planned three-tiered consumption tax which would replace a raft of levies, including the import tax.

The reform package includes a competition clause which would set a ceiling on the margin that can be charged.

The drive for the tax reform stems from years of concern about the high cost of living, resulting in massive protests and culminating in a 12-day general strike three years ago.

A union umbrella group has called for a general strike to coincide with today's sitting of Congress to pressure the representatives to adopt the reforms in their entirety.

However, employers are opposed to the competition segment.

Several unions also have reservations about combining all reforms and announced that they would not strike.

New Caledonia's economy has cooled after the decline in commodity prices and the completion of major construction projects in the nickel sector.