A 20% retail tax has jeopardised a £20 million investment creating 50 extra local jobs, according to Jersey’s Assistant Economic Development Minister.
“This weekend offers will be meeting with the people who want to do that to try and convince them that it’s still ok to do it. But they have put it on hold, and they have put it on hold for one reason only, because they are now faced with a 20% retail tax.”
It is understood he was referring to a family of High Net Worth individuals with a retail background who have moved to the island and are looking at the possibility of a ‘major retail development’.
As politicians have been debating the 2018 Budget – which includes a levy on retailers making more than £500,000 a year – Deputy Murray Norton has issued a scathing attack.
He’s accused the Treasury Minister of steam-rolling through his £5.5 million revenue-raiser without proper consideration:
“Did we consult with the Consumer Association? No, because we know better. Did we consult with the Jersey Retail Association? Course not, why we consult with them. They’re just the retail association. Did we consult with the Chamber of Commerce? Why would we do that? They only represent business.”
The Chamber of Commerce and JRA have warned the 20% tax will threaten future investment in the industry and stop UK retailers setting up shop here.
The Consumer Council says it believes food prices will rise, something the Treasury Minister Senator Alan Maclean has refuted.