Some Fiji Traders Not Passing On VAT Reductions To Customers

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Pacific Islands Development Program, East-West Center With Support From Center for Pacific Islands Studies, University of Hawai‘i

Revenue Authority to investigate ‘unscrupulous companies’

By Reginald Chandar

SUVA, Fiji (Fijilive, Jan. 7, 2016) – Fiji Revenue and Customs Authority (FRCA) has issued a stern warning to traders who are not passing the reduction in Value Added Tax (VAT) to consumers and is currently investigating four such businesses.

Acting FRCA chief executive, Mr Visvanath Das said an audit team is investigating certain retailers who have not decreased prices of goods and services following the reduction in VAT from 15 per cent to 9 per cent effective 1st of January this year.

"We have been informed of some unscrupulous companies who have not revised their prices following reduction in VAT.

In some cases the prices have even gone up.

Some retailers have decreased prices however it is not proportionate to the 6 per cent decrease," he said.

"Our auditors are on the ground conducting comprehensive audit of these companies who will face full brunt of the law.

We have also received certain evidence from the Consumer Council of Fiji on these deceitful companies." "We wish to warn traders to ensure that the current prices must be reflective of the 9 per cent value added tax (VAT) rate and all prices must be changed to ensure that consumers are paying VAT adjusted prices," Mr Dass added.

Any retailer who does not comply with the new VAT rate will face a penalty of $50,000 [US$23,250] or upon conviction to a fine of up to $100,000 [US$46,500] or ten years' imprisonment.

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