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Private sector businesses to be given tax breaks for bonuses awarded to staff

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Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves says that he hopes a tax break given to local companies this Christmas would encourage them to “pay it forward” to their employees.{{more}}

At a ceremony on Tuesday to launch the construction of three bridges in Chateaubelair, the Prime Minister announced that after discussions with comptroller of the Inland Revenue Kelvin Pompey, it was decided that business in the private sector would be given tax breaks for bonuses awarded to staff.

“We have the private sector and I want them to give their workers bonuses; and I am encouraging them in this way: If you give up to $250 bonus, you can give more if you want, but for the first 250 which you give as bonus, the worker doesn’t have to pay any tax on that bonus,” Gonsalves stated.

“And to encourage the companies, if you give $250 or anything above $250, I am allowing you to write off half of that in relation to your taxes.

So, basically, you will be paying $125 out of that $250. So, that way, I want to encourage the private sector to give,” he added.

The Prime Minister indicated that the Government was doing its part to stimulate the economy over the Christmas season, pointing to a number of projects that are currently taking place around the country, including the construction of the international airport at Argyle, and the South Leeward Highway.

“The Government is doing its part. It’s $3.5 million we are spending on the roads; you see how we cleaning up the roads? And the jobs coming after the roads… and we have a special programme in town; 3.5 million dollars and we have all these projects I talk about….”

A number of businesses usually give their employees bonuses, at the end of the year.