Letters To The Editor, 18th February, 2016

Withholding tax Maganlal Mohanlal,  Suva   A weekly interview on the tax policies presented by Rachna Lal has so far not covered the subject of withholding tax. It is one
18 Feb 2016 08:30
Letters To The Editor, 18th February, 2016
Letters To The Editor

Withholding tax

Maganlal Mohanlal,  Suva


A weekly interview on the tax policies presented by Rachna Lal has so far not covered the subject of withholding tax. It is one for which letters of complaints have been written in your paper.

The Government has reviewed the tax legislation in 2012. The purpose was to give relief to the taxpayers but, unfortunately, not all of the taxpayers got the relief.

People paying 20 per cent withholding tax on interest earned from the banks was once refundable but it is now no longer refundable. This happens even when their total income does not reach the exempted tax threshold of $16,000.

It is my sincere suggestion to Rachna Lal that, in her next interview on tax matters, she kindly raises the above issue to our acting chief executive Visvanath Das who, I am sure, will be able to provide a satisfactory answer.

He should also be able to tell us whether there is a possibility of changing the regulations to give justice to the concerned taxpayers.


Thank you Russia

Timoci Gaunavinaka,  Nausori


We thank Russia for donating $19 million worth of arms and ammunition to Fiji. The arms will assist our soldiers in their work at various high-risk areas around the world like in the Golan Heights.

It is also good to hear that New Zealand will now try to increase its co-operation with Fiji on both trade and military training.

Fiji’s decision to join the non-aligned movement and become a country that is friendly to all and enemy to none is reaping its rewards. During all our various previous governments, we were aligned to the West. Whatever stand the USA, Australia, Britain and Canada, we took. We became puppets dancing to their tunes.

With all that support we gave the West in those many decades, no US Head of State has ever visited our shores. Britain refused to compensate our soldiers who were used as guinea pigs in their nuclear bomb testing.

Australia tried but failed to block our soldiers’ participation in the UN peacekeeping missions. They all agreed to suspend us from the Commonwealth and even from the Pacific Forum Secretariat which we kindly host.

Today, the Chinese and the Indian Heads of State have visited us and one even addressed Parliament. Both promised to pour in millions of dollars in aid.

We have today become a role model for economic development for Small Islands Developing States (SIDS), a status we have never achieved even when the late Pope John Paul II profiled us as ‘the way the world should be’.

We still have room for improvement and we will, but please dear critics, do not try to exaggerate our few small down falls to pretentiously cover the huge and sustainable progress we have achieved.  Toso Viti.


Dollar value

Nardeo Mishra,  Valelevu


When our currency changed to dollars and cents on January 13, 1969, the value of US$1.00 was F$0.72 and now our dollar is worth only about US$0.45 for every F$1.00. What a big change.

Our currency has been eroding ever since and with the two 20 per cent devaluations after the coups it got even worse.

All our overseas buying is done in US currency and as our dollar gets weaker compared to US dollar the cost of our goods increase.

Our foreign reserves may look good but what is the actual buying power of our dollar when we pay our off-shore loans in American dollars, we pay more than double in Fijian currency.

With the reduction in VAT we still pay a high price for our goods. Why? The fact is that the value of our dollar is so weak and that’s why goods cost so much. To overcome this problem and to see that we have cheaper goods we have to revalue our dollar.

It is no use showing that we have big foreign reserve and on the contrary the actual value is almost nothing.

It is high time the Government looked at this issue very seriously to see that the people get cheaper goods.

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