NASSAU, BAHAMAS — Acting Financial Secretary Marlon Johnson yesterday clarified that goods brought into the country will only be taxed at the point of entry, as concerns have surfaced on social media that taxes may also be levied on online purchases from online marketplaces such as Amazon and eBay.
Johnson said: “Goods brought into The Bahamas will only be taxed at the point of entry into the country as is done today. Thus, goods bought from Amazon or eBay will not attract VAT by those companies.”
“By existing law (not anything new) all services consumed in the country are subject to VAT provided the vendor meets the minimum $100,000 per annum threshold for sales inside the country.
He said: “The Department of Inland Revenue has been working to ensure that the online vendors are aware of the laws of the country which is similar to most other countries where VAT or other sales tax is applied. As they become aware and work through their internal processes, they tend to comply without issue.”
Beginning November 1, Facebook ads in The Bahamas will be subject to a 12 percent value-added tax (VAT).
Johnson recently noted that the move would put Facebook and other online operators on “even footing” with Bahamian companies offering marketing services inside the Bahamas who have to charge the necessary VAT.
Facebook has announced the tax applies to advertisers whose “Sold To” country of their business or personal address is set to The Bahamas.