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Thursday, July 13, 2006

Ulufa'alu wants government finance protected

By George Tausiria

Finance for Minister Hon. Bartholomew Ulufa’alu yesterday reiterated that the recent guidelines his department had released on remissions were aimed at protecting government revenue.

The Finance Minister said: “If we give away revenue, for instance through the granting of remissions, this would call for increases in taxes which is unjustified.”

The Finance Minister assured Solomon Islanders that while remission can be an incentive for investment promotion, it will be a real low priority.

The Government’s new strategy he revealed would be: “If tax rates are the problem, this would be addressed from the overall tax regime’s point of view, rather than making exemptions for individual players.

“If people are complaining about high duties paid by the logging industry, we should profess a level playing field for all.”

Mr Ulufa’alu said revenue collection was stabilized since the April riots and given the recovery process in the economy, the growth rate should remain high.

The minister is back to work after being hospitalised for some weeks, few days after the present government came into power.

source: Government Communications Unit

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