Published On: Sat, Dec 15th, 2012

Sales tax on luxurious and unhealthy products increases to 9 percent

WILLEMSTAD — The Council of Ministers approved the increase of sales tax on luxurious products and on articles harmful for one’s health or the environment. The 9 percent sales tax applies not only to fast-food restaurants, but all restaurants, In conformity with the current proposal this differentiation means the sales tax will go up from 6 to 9 percent. On the other hand the government will work on a lower sales tax for all kinds of vegetables and fruit from 6 to 0 percent. Outgoing minister of Finance, José Jardim announced this  during the weekly press conference from the Council of Ministers. The former minister of Economic Development, Nasser Abdul el Hakim, had already worked on introducing a zero-tariff for ten vegetable and fruit products.

The minister further announced that the Council of Ministers approved the draft budget for 2013 this week. This budget should’ve been presented to the Parliament on the second Tuesday of September. The budget has now completed all advisory processes and will soon be forwarded to the Parliament. The intention is that the Parliament approves the budget before the end of this year.

The draft budget 2013 departs from a balanced budget. Jardim emphasized that with this budget the interim-government wants to make a start on the recovery of the economy of Curaçao. The budget includes reforms in the field of taxes, national health (introduction of basic medical insurance), and increasing the retirement age in combination with social-economic measures to spare the less fortunate in the society and to stimulate the economy.

As economy measure the government also decided to lower the daily wage compensation for public servants and ministers. This is currently 130 euros or dollars per day for public servants and 145 euros or dollars per day for ministers. Per January 1st, this will be 100 euros or dollars per day for public servants and 110 euros or dollars per day for ministers.

The government will also work on recycling redundant material within the government as much as possible and on flexible contracts for employees and orders.

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