The Ministry of Finance says the Chamber of Industry and Commerce has misunderstood the IMF report.
While the Chamber says the Government owes businesses $5.5b in VAT, the Finance Ministry contends that businesses owe roughly $16b in taxes.
The following is a press release from the Ministry of Finance:
The Ministry of Finance wishes to set the record straight on statements made by the Trinidad and Tobago Chamber of Industry and Commerce (TTCIC) in a press release dated November 28th, 2017.
The Chamber of Industry and Commerce is calling the government's $5.5bn debt to businesses as unacceptable.
The debt is as a result of VAT refund owed to some businesses.
In a statement, the business group says quote: "The T&T chamber demands that government take corrective action immediately, in what has evolved into a highly disruptive situation." end quote.
The chamber says while it is not unusual for delays in the VAT refunds, it has gotten worse to the extent that it's now over 2 years that businesses are still waiting for their VAT refunds.
The Downtown Owners and Merchants Association (DOMA) is speaking out against the call by PSA President Watson Duke for workers of the Board of Inland Revenue and Customs and Excise Division to stay away from work on Thursday and Friday.
DOMA issued the following statement today.
"On behalf of the members of the Downtown Owners and Merchants community we wish to express serious apprehensions regarding the call by the PSA President for Thursday and Friday to be days of rest for the Board and Inland Revenue and the Customs and Excise Division.