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Sep 15, 2022

Minister Ferguson Says Duty Exemption is a Tall Order to Ask For

Rodwell Ferguson

Minister Ferguson also told us that while he would have to take the request for duty exemption back to Cabinet, his fellow ministers would have to approve the granting of this request.

 

Rodwell Ferguson, Minister of Transport

“Since the pandemic, no buses from Guatemala, no buses from Mexico is coming into Belize. They want to come. They met with me several times and I told them plain “if you want to come, then you must also go into your country at a certain price.” So as I speak I make my stance that if you want to come we must be reciprocal that Belizeans are going to your country likewise. About three or four months ago their Minister of Tourism came to Belize from Mexico and came with the same request. And I stood my ground and I told him the same thing. While they accuse me of going to Guatemala, I have a clear conscience. When the owner from that company came to see me, I told him point blank “you can only come into our country if your country allows us to go into their country. So he said that he was going to arrange a meeting for me to meet the officials in Guatemala. I told him that is no issue if it’s going to be reciprocal. Duty exemptions I don’t if Cabinet will give them any exemption. I made the approach already, but there will be a loss of revenue for the Government of Belize. So that will have to be another revisit for Cabinet to see if they want to grant them exemption. The duty on buses in total, I think it’s about thirty-two percent. So it’s going to be a loss in revenue especially in these difficult times. So I will have to go back to them and see what they will say.”

 


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