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Feb 16, 2023

Floralia Limited Given 75% Exemption on Import and Excise Duty

Is Floralia Limited enjoying special privileges from the Government of Belize to put them at an advantage in the public transport industry? Things are heating up within the industry as G.O.B.’s demands for upgraded buses become more pressing. Questions and concerns have always been surrounding Floralia Limited’s entry into the sector and whether they have been receiving special privileges. These discussions have, for the most part, been raised by long-established bus owners and operators. Well, a leaked document from within the Ministry of Finance reveals that the Ministry of Finance approved the waiver of seventy-five percent import duty and excise duty for four 2022 Yutong Buses along with one hundred and fifty packages and spare parts, all for Floralia. The document is dated January twenty-eight, 2022. These exemptions are only now becoming public a year later, but it would have had to be discussed or at least raised at the Transport Board level. So when we asked Thomas Shaw, the President of the Belize Bus Association, about the concessions, he confirmed that the matter was raised in a meeting some time ago.


On the phone; Thomas Shaw, President, B.B.A.

Thomas Shaw

“Pertaining to the agreement I know verbally inside one of our meetings they did mention that due to the cost, well the board, they did mention that due to the cost of the bus, and that they were trying to seek assistance for Floralia. But, seeing the document now I wasn’t privy to that. Looking at the document, if you listen to the different shows even interviews with eh owner of that company he categorically states that they have maintained their dues and duty and all of it. The minister states that he is going to fix the industry. When I look at it and saw it what came to my mind is if you are giving this company preferential treatment and you want to fix the industry this should have been across the board and being gazetted and its law that for the industry these are the incentives that the government will be given in order to have the operators upgrade. But when an operator is getting these kind of treatment and they hitting on the other operators about old bus and all of it they can afford to do what they are doing because nobody is following the money, or asking where the money is coming from and the other operators are suppose to fall in line and one operator is benefiting from this and the other operators are right out there, and this is my take on it.”

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