Be prepared to pay VAT on computers and tablets, come February 1 2016. The Finance Bill of 2016 which was presented to the Trinidad and Tobago Parliament on Monday 11th January, 2016 proposes amendments to Schedule II of the VAT Act 75:06. The Ministry of Finance has published the new VAT list on its website.
According to the list of items that will be standard VAT rated are:
29. The items contained in the First Schedule to the Customs Act under Tariff Heading No. 84.71, being automatic data processing machines and units thereof, magnetic or optical readers, machines for transcribing data onto data media in coded form and machines for processing such data, not elsewhere specified or included.
30. Computer peripherals and mouse pads, not including audio compact discs of Tariff Subheading 8523.40.40 and digital versatile discs (DVD’s) of Subheadings
8523.40.60 and 8523.40.70.
30A. Terminal equipment or other equipment to be installed or used for a public telecommunications network or telecommunications service or radio communications service and certified as such by the Telecommunications Authority of Trinidad and Tobago.
Which appears to cover any computer desktop, laptop or tablet and related computer peripherals and mouse pads (with the exception of CD and DVDs). VAT on computers was removed in the late 1990s.
The changes to the VAT schedule is scheduled to become effective February 1 2016 with the new rate of VAT to be 12½%