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Bahamas 7.5% VAT 2015 nears agreement

  • Aug 29, 2014 | Richard Asquith

Bahamas 7.5% VAT 2015 nears agreement

The timetable for the introduction of VAT in the Bahamas has been confirmed. The implementation date will be 1 January 2015, and the standard VAT rate will be 7.5%. However, the Senate has yet to confirm its approval.

The introduction of Bahamas VAT at 15% in 2014 was dropped in June following much criticism. Whilst there is no indirect tax regime in the Bahamas currently, the country has to implement a consumption tax regime to enable it to drop import tariffs, a requirement for its application to the World Trade Organisation.

The new plans include a new telephone enquiries service, and an extensive programme for educating the new civil servants to run the scheme, starting in September. In common with the EU VAT regime, many services such as financial services, public and live/cultural events will be exempt. Returns will be monthly, and businesses earning less than BS$ 400,000 will not be obliged to register.

Eligible businesses will be able to register for the tax from September 2014, and will be invited to training sessions in time for the 2015 start.

VP Global Indirect Tax
Richard Asquith
VP Global Indirect Tax Richard Asquith
Richard Asquith is VP Global Indirect Tax at Avalara, helping businesses understand their compliance obligations as they grow globally. He is part of the European leadership team which won International Tax Review's 2020 Tax Technology Firm of the Year. Richard trained as an accountant with KPMG in the UK, and went on to work in Hungary, Russia and France with EY.