NSRL a godsend!

‘Tax is one of the most exciting things to happen to Bim’

Minister of Housing and Lands Denis Kellman is describing the National Social Responsibility Levy (NSRL) as a godsend that will become one of the most exciting things to happen in Barbados.

Never shy to express his opinion on whatever the issue may be, Kellman said the controversial tax was one of the only logical solutions to the country’s fiscal problems.

“You can not tell me that the country has a problem as it relates to losses, that the expenditure was greater than the revenue and that you also need to increase your share of the expenditure. Then in the next breath you tell me not to increase revenue.

“Think about it. If your expenditures are increasing and you are already in a deficit, what are you asking me to do? You’re asking me to destroy an economy,” the Member of Parliament for St Lucy told Barbados TODAY.

The NSRL, which came into effect on July 1, saw the tax moving from two per cent of the customs value of imported and locally produced goods, to ten per cent.

It has been the cause of much consternation among the business community and the labour movement, with the two sides organizing a protest march on July 24, which attracted an estimated 20,000 demonstrators.

During a meeting of the Social Partnership last week, Prime Minister Freundel Stuart said the NSRL was not introduced “by stealth”, but resulted from extensive discussions among experts in the Ministry of Finance and Economic Affairs and the Central Bank.

He said given the country’s serious deficit problem, the Ministry of Finance had sought to deal with it incrementally, adding that though the tax was being viewed by its critics as the “sin against the Holy Ghost”, his Government was forced to “bite the bullet” in an attempt to address its large deficit.

Today, Kellman lamented that the “same doomsayers” who were calling on the administration to turn to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) or to bow to the wishes of the rating agencies, were the very ones now criticizing the tax.

“It is like, if you are asked to do something and when you do it, people get vex. And I really want to congratulate the Minister of Finance, to tell the honest truth, for coming up with the NSRL,” Kellman said.

“Here it is in the 90s we had the VAT [Value Added Tax] which I have always argued was implemented the wrong way. A lot of people do not recognize that VAT, even though it was good from a fiscal point of view, it was very bad for productivity in the country.

“What VAT did was to make local production more expensive. When VAT was introduced it brought down the cost of the imported goods at the port while at the same time that revenue that we gave up at the port we added to services, increasing the cost of local production.”

He also placed an interesting spin on former Prime Minister Owen Arthur’s analysis of the tax.

“He said the taxation policy of the present Government is worse than the IMF. [This] tells me that we can get a surplus if we keep our taxation policy in place. [That] means that the unions will benefits and the private sector will also be able to benefit because they were worrying about the deficits and internal borrowings and so on.

“If we have been able to deal with the fiscal problem, then it allows us the opportunity to be able to go and speak to the international financing agencies and also to speak to the credit rating agencies with some form of confidence because that is what they were asking us,” he rationalized.

Kellman further contended that the NSRL did not create any headaches for retailers, as they were not the ones who had to account for it.

“It doesn’t add that other tier of book work. That is a myth and that is fake news. NSRL comes to retailers like how duty comes to them. You do not see it, so you don’t have to worry about it. The consumer doesn’t have to worry about it even though it is in the price. [With] VAT now, you have to do a separation,” the minister said.


28 Responses to NSRL a godsend!

  1. John Everatt August 17, 2017 at 1:04 am

    This guy is an idiot. Prices are increasing already and will do so more. Manufacturing will literally shut down due to the cost of importing materials. People will not be able to afford to purchase as they have in the past. Some would say “doom and gloom” but folks, this is reality.

    • Jennifer August 17, 2017 at 1:22 am

      Not to mention if they can get it collected in the first place as this is another loop hole for the dishonest.
      Guys – buy what you need and forget about what you want.

      • Renaldo August 17, 2017 at 8:48 am

        Listen all this tax will do is dampen consumption and contract the economy. The only positive spin if you want to call it that is that the NSRL along with the 2% tax on foreign exchange purchases will protect the foreign reserves since in theory it should reduce the consumption of foreign goods. On the other hand the government clearly does not understand economics 101 if they are going to come and put measures in place that will contract the economy and then tell me that they expect growth and that they also expect to collect record revenues from taxes. This is indicative of the fact that the government does not understand the basics of taxes. If you raise taxes to the point that you dampen consumption it is obvious that there will be less transactions happening in the economy for you to collect taxes from. whereas if you lower taxes people spend more which means they are more transactions happening in the economy leading to collection of more tax revenue based on the volume of transactions happening in the economy. The problem the MOF has is that he keeps arguing a set of non-sense about we dont have an expediture problem but rather we have a revenue problem. The reality is that no politician on either side wants to admit it or be the one to do it but a lot of the relatively free social services we currently enjoy are not sustainable. What Errol Barrow did for this country was supposed to be just a platform to provide us with the tools to propel this country forward. it was not something that was supposed to last forever but Barbadians took it as a right of passage and decided to hold politicians to randsom over it through the years. We have Barbadians who say they cant pay for education but go and research how many of them have car loans at the bank for vehicles costing in excess of 30k. People who would tell you they cant afford health insurance or to cover their medical expenses but still they partying every week and spending excessive amounts of money in clothes and consumption of alcohol. Barbadians are a set of irresponsible people who continue to believe it is okay to be unproductive and just casually stroll through life on the Government’s back. Some people may take offence to this but I have no reservations about it. Please note that when I say government I am not referring to the current government i mean successive governments regardless of whether it is DLP, BLP or NDP. I dont engage in this partisan behaviour like many bajans do. A politician is a politician and will always be a politician.

        • Jennifer August 17, 2017 at 9:30 am

          Renaldo – true, but our current systems need overhauling to change some of this people’s mentality.

          • Milli Watt August 17, 2017 at 10:10 am

            @ renaldo…………that growth you talk about is based on a flawed fractional reserve system that allows banks to expand the money supply based on debt in areas that are not conducive to investment but consumption. I would like to shovel up ALL of them and put them on a slow moving slow leaking boat to North Korea.

          • Renaldo August 17, 2017 at 10:18 am

            Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong’s (Singapore) 2005 budget speech provides a precise
            description of the government’s approach toward welfare:
            We must not breed a culture of entitlement, encouraging Singaporeans to seek
            Government support as a matter of right, whether or not they need it. .. . The better-off
            must help the poor and the disadvantaged – the sick, the elderly, the disabled and the
            unemployed. In many developed countries, the state takes on this responsibility, but his
            is invariably financed by high taxes and levies on businesses and those who are working.
            Our social compact is rather different. It is based on personal responsibility, with the
            family and community playing key roles in supporting peopled through difficulties. The
            state will provide a safety net, but it should be a last resort, not a first resort, and should
            focus on the minority who need help the most. We thus avoid state welfare, which will
            erode our incentive to achieve and sap our will to strive. Our social compact enables us
            to keep taxes low, and lets people keep the fruits of their labour and businesses the
            rewards of their enterprise. And when we do well and have budget surpluses, we can
            distribute some of them back to Singaporean (The Straits Times, 19 February 2005).

  2. Meakai August 17, 2017 at 2:17 am

    How many more days must we wait Jah, before dem release we from this bondage?

    We want to know Jah, why in this time of plenty sufferation, murderation and financial deprivation, the need for electoral revocation and sanction, cease and desist/resist and delist proclamations and rose-coloured spectacles are so hard to find?

    Revolution is the only solution when marching and talking leaves you with nothing but sore throats, swollen ankles and blistered soles.

  3. Meakai August 17, 2017 at 2:30 am

    Dennis K always thinks he has something important to say. Unfortunately for us mere mortals, editors and moderators seem to agree. Then again most of us couldn’t get 16 votes to be Form Captain, so what do we know.

  4. Midnight August 17, 2017 at 2:33 am

    @John E….. man please, stop insulting idiots!

  5. Tony Webster August 17, 2017 at 3:30 am

    When this oracle of wisdom speaks, I never know if to laugh hysterically, or cry, or fall to my knees and pray! Logically, it follows that if NSRL of 10% is good… therefore NSRL of 20% would be better? At that rate, after filling up QEH coffers, the Hon. representative for St.Lucy might be able to get BOTH his new airport….AND his ” viewing tower”??

    Hmmm…cud he be related to Trump?

  6. Don Keyote August 17, 2017 at 5:14 am

    This man is running neck and neck with physical deficit Ince for the title of “Most Idiotic Dem”. Somebody in the party with a little common sense should tell him that when a government’s expenditure exceeds its revenue, it creates a deficit, not a loss.

    But hopefully, the voters in St. Lucy will let him know come election day what they think of his “godsend”, the NSRL.

    • Carson C Cadogan August 17, 2017 at 7:49 am

      “”… physical deficit Ince “”, I sat in my living room and watched on CBC tv the meeting of the so called social partnership at the Hilton Hotel and I heard one of the private sector representatives speak of “”physical deficit””, DAVID SMALL.

      • roger headley August 17, 2017 at 9:04 am

        Yes but David Small or whoever does not have big post in the Min of Economic Affairs, so he may be excused. What is Jepter’s excuse – a man who likes to claim that he worked on Wall Street

  7. samantha walker August 17, 2017 at 5:25 am

    Mr Kellman has lost the plot, tell me how many other countries tax their citizens to the hilt and say it is a good thing….. you are the exception to the rule, other countries try and keep their products affordable for their citizens. All you see is money, you dont care about where/how you attain it…..Dont worry about your high expenditure, we can always tax the citizens.

    Agree with Jennifer, cater to your needs not your wants !!

  8. BIGSKY August 17, 2017 at 6:31 am

    Every time DENIS KELLMAN opens his mouth, I have to get a GIBBERISH TRANSLATOR to understand what he is trying to say.

  9. chris hill August 17, 2017 at 6:41 am

    Rantings of a madman!!!!

  10. Savannah West August 17, 2017 at 7:24 am

    Oh My Goodness… Lets hope that no one outside of Barbados hears the rants of this man. What a fabulous idiot of the highest order. Do you really think he actually has a high school degree? The man only ever speaks gibberish. With NO logical thought process. The only thing he is, is consistent.

  11. Hermine Alleyne August 17, 2017 at 7:25 am

    Short man syndrome head too near his backside, what evey he is taking ain’t working its best if he would just shut up,you will never make PM, you even make the sleeping giant look good and that ain’t easy.

  12. Carson C Cadogan August 17, 2017 at 7:43 am

    I agree. Sometimes we find that some Bajans think and evaluate things in slow motion.

    As time goes by Bajans, of their own thinking without being misled by the Trade Union movement and the Barbados private sector which is largely made up of White people and Indians who don’t have Black peoples best interests at heart, will realise that the tax is really a good solution.

    • Roger Headley August 17, 2017 at 6:37 pm

      Solution to what? So the tax is to put white people and indians out of business? As a black man how many employees do you have?

    • Robert Goren August 17, 2017 at 8:02 pm

      “….the Barbados private sector which is largely made up of White people and Indians who don’t have Black peoples best interests at heart….”

      You DLP has given all the major government contracts to “White people” such as Mark Maloney and Bjorn Bjerkham, and appointed them to the board of directors of Barbados Central Bank and LIAT.

      And the Indian Abdul Pandor is a consultant in the Ministry of Transport and is the Chairman of the Barbados Transport Authority.

      So, Carson C. Cadogan, I could likewise conclude that the Black people in this DLP administration do not “have Black peoples best interests at heart” either.

  13. hcalndre August 17, 2017 at 8:00 am

    Kellman; if the Vat was not good for the country why the PM and the MOFalse information continue with it for the past 9 years? The 10% NSRL is the best tax that barbadians were burden with because your wooden god told you so. If it don’t work then they will put 10% more, that`s easy because the word “Levy” has consequences.

  14. Harry August 17, 2017 at 8:48 am

    CCC Small must be related to Jepter Ince. When Kellman speaks it makes realize why the late PM never made him a minister, but as Kellman said the present PM “has a long memory”.

    Unfortunately for barbados we have the worst post Independence Govt check the DLP website and see what financial training our MOF has.

  15. Johnathan August 17, 2017 at 9:25 am

    Why wunnah waste so much time with this iliterate,classless scumbag???

  16. Sue Donym August 17, 2017 at 9:42 am

    These rantings and revalations are a sin against the intelligence of Bajans. If this is the best that the experts in Finance and the Central Bank could produce, this coupling must be discouraged as the almost incestuous product of two creatures of the MoF. Thus we must widen the gene pool of ideas.

    Even the most inexperienced teenagers trying a live-with relationship understand the difference between mandatory and discretionary spending, so 5xTax Rate does not necessarily translate to 5xCollection.

    The operation was a success but the patient died.

  17. Sanky August 17, 2017 at 2:52 pm

    Here goes my favourite comedian again………
    Mout open words jump out

  18. Belfast August 17, 2017 at 5:37 pm

    For Kellman, a Godsend was the death of David Thompson. Who for a PM in his right mind would plonk Kellman down as a minister?

  19. BaJan boy August 18, 2017 at 5:46 am

    Imagine having to endure idiot for another 6 months…good thing you will also get rid of the other idiot Carson C Cadogan the same time..


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