26 Oct 2009

Cook Islands abandons VAT increase

11:20 am on 26 October 2009

The Cook Islands Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Sir Terepai Maoate says he's recommended that Cabinet abandon the Financial Secretary's proposal for a 15% VAT increase following consultations with the Economic Taskforce, Chamber of Commerce and Tourism Council.

Sir Terepai says he's taken onboard their advice and concerns on the implications of increasing VAT.

The Finance minister says he also appreciated the worries expressed by the public that this initiative would cause the already high cost of goods to increase and "that is a real concern."

Sir Terepai says there's a feeling that the proposal may not benefit everyone, and he has asked the Ministry of Finance to come back with another proposal.