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OECS Examines Border Tax Measures

by Amanda Banks, Tax-News.com, London

13 November 2008


Trade and Finance officials from the independent member states of the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) met in St. Lucia on Thursday to examine the findings of a study commissioned by the Commonwealth Secretariat which reviewed the application of the customs service charge and other levies on imports into the area.

The scope of the study included Antigua & Barbuda, Grenada and Saint Lucia. However the findings and conclusions are relevant to all member states. The study also made recommendations to rationalise such measures to make them consistent with World Trade Organisation (WTO) and CARICOM rules.

At the review of their trade policies last year, members of the WTO highlighted the fact that the application of some of the taxes on imports into OECS countries was not consistent with WTO rules. This study was commissioned to assist member states to reform their border tax regimes.

The OECS and the Commonwealth Secretariats met as part of a partnership to help member states to change their trade policies to make them compatible with WTO trade rules. The meeting aimed to create an action plan for reform of border tax regimes that will include time frames and resource requirements.


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