GST Personal Importation Review (Phase 1)
Launch date: 29/04/2021
Review status: Review started
What is the review about?
In January 2021, the Minister for Treasury & Resources informed the Panel that a review on the collection of imported Goods and Services Tax – in respect of unaccompanied goods for personal use – had been launched. The review would be led by Revenue Jersey with involvement from Jersey Customs & Immigration Service. This follows a long-standing commitment by the Government of Jersey to be a “fast follower” of developments of GST and Value-Added Tax (VAT) in the United Kingdom and European Union.
It was expected that the early findings for the Government’s review would be ascertained by 28th February 2021, with emerging findings by 30th April 2021, and a final report delivered to the States Assembly by 30th June 2021.
Before this report reaches the Assembly, the Panel intends to undertake Phase 1 of its review into GST Personal Importation, which will focus on examining the process and findings of the Government’s review into the collection of Import GST, and whether the proposed changes to GST are both fair and equitable against the Government’s strategic priorities. The Panel will also evaluate the fiscal soundness of the potential changes and their respective impacts on revenue raising.
Subsequent phases of this review will then be guided by the timeframe for the Government Plan 2022-25, with the Panel seeking to compare this review’s findings and recommendations against the eventual proposition.
Due to his experience within transport and logistics, the Constable of St John, Andy Jehan, has been co-opted to work with the Panel on this important review.
To inform its review, the Panel intends to hold a series of private briefings with relevant officers – primarily the Comptroller of Revenue and the Treasurer of the States – and hold a public hearing with the Minister for Treasury & Resources. The Panel is likely to engage an expert advisor to assist during the review.
The Panel will also be seeking the views of tax professionals and relevant tax payers. Islanders are encouraged to share their views by:
Completing the 'Get involved' form on the States Assembly website;
Emailing email@example.com; or
Messaging the States Assembly social media pages.
The Panel is particularly in hearing your views on the following areas:
Whether the Government should act early to secure change in respect of major offshore retailers;
Whether online retailers should charge Goods and Services tax on all personal goods;
Whether you think there are any essential items, such as food, sanitary products or clothing, that should be free from a Goods and Services tax when personally imported;
What effect you expect the removal of the GST de-minimis level to have on the personal finances of Islanders, particularly those on lower incomes;
How the Government of Jersey should seek to assist local businesses with GST-related forms when importing goods into the Island;
Whether you believe that the Government of Jersey should require all large, offshore retailers to appoint a Jersey agent to account for GST;
Whether you believe that a "gift relief" will be needed and required in future GST administrations;
Whether certain items mailed from the UK to Jersey, such as to a student, should receive an exemption from GST;
Whether you believe that the change to GST could result in suppliers not delivering items to the Island, and whether this change could result in less choice for Islanders;
What views you may have on the scope of the measures used to stop people from avoiding GST payments;
Which specific areas the Government should give particular attention to when reviewing this subject;
What effect, if any, would you expect the removal of the GST de-minimis level to have on the personal finances of Islanders, particularly those on lower incomes;
Whether the personal finances of those on lower incomes influence how GST is applied to goods, and if so, how;
Whether certain, locally-purchased goods should carry an exemption from GST, and if so, what and why;
Whether the way that certain goods are transacted on or off-Island should be exempt from GST, such as when buying or ordering online; and
What other key concerns you have regarding these potential changes.
Terms of reference
The Phase 1* review by the Panel will provide high-level scrutiny of the Government’s Review into proposed changes to Goods and Service Tax (GST) in respect of unaccompanied goods for personal use.
The Panel will:
Examine the process and findings of the Government’s review into the collection of import GST in respect of unaccompanied goods for personal use.
Assess if proposed changes to Goods and Services Tax (GST) in respect of unaccompanied goods for personal use are fair and equitable against the Government’s strategic priorities.
Evaluate the fiscal soundness of Goods and Services Tax (GST) changes and their potential impacts on revenue raising.
(*Phase 1 correlates to the timeline associated with the review report being presented by the Minister for Treasury and Resources - 30th June 2021. Subsequent Phases will be guided by the timeframe for Government Plan 2022-2025 and draft legislation which once ascertained will enable the Panel to examine proposition detail.)