[www.inewsguyana.com] – The Guyana Revenue Authority (GRA) has issued a stern warning to persons exploiting and contemplating exploitation of the Re –migrant Scheme; saying it will do all in its power to protect the integrity of the scheme.
According to GRA, in keeping with its mandate to promote compliance with the laws, regulations and policies it administers, it is reminding taxpayers of the various requirements that must be met in order to be deemed compliant.
“GRA is once again reminding the taxpaying public that concessions are not by right, but have preconditions applying as well as post conditions as to the application of those concessions,” a release from the agency noted.
This warning comes after two Lexus vehicles, reportedly costing US$90,000 each, became the center of an investigation where it is believed the vehicles were not imported to be used by the re –migrants, thereby cheating the agency millions in taxes.
GRA acknowledged that recently it has come to their attention that a large number of re – migrants, having returned to Guyana from their sojourn overseas, are not keeping for their use, the assets that are presumably their property acquired while living abroad.
To this end, the Agency warned that this is highly irregular and advises that this will in no form or shape be condoned.
“The Agency’s letter is very clear in that it indicates that the concession is granted for the specific use by re – migrants and should not be transferred, leased or sold for a period of 3 years after one’s return to take up their residence in Guyana as a bona fide re – migrant,” the statement added.
It was noted too that many re – migrants when found not to be in possession of their vehicles, are using jaded excuses all of which the GRA says it views as a violation of the condition under which the re – migrants are granted their concessions and will take all necessary action to enforce the penalty clause under which violation of the concessions occurs.
“Where the re – migrants are unwilling or unable to pay the pro rata taxes or in some cases the entire amount due, recourse will be taken to forfeit such assets.”
The revenue agency pointed out that Taxpayers have rights and it supports the use of the Court by re – migrants to challenge the actions taken by the agency.
The GRA urges those who are contemplating making use of concession schemes to be cognizant of the laws including anti money laundering legislation, regulations, international agreements and policies governing same as there are serious consequences once found guilty of violating the laws pertaining to such offences.