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Feb 19, 2008

Taxes As Of January 1, 2008

Based on specific French laws n°2007-223 and n°2007-24, which date from February 21, 2007, defining the political status change of Saint Barth into an Overseas Collectivity (COM) the island’s territorial council voted on November 13, 2007 to create the list and amount of local taxes that went into effect on January 1, 2008. The first increase is that of import duties on all merchandise from 4% to 5%. In addition, the population of Saint Barth is now subject to two new taxes: an annual business tax and a registration tax for all vehicles. Both are due by March 31, 2008.

The annual business tax is payable by all businesses, no matter what kind of business it is or what it does, as long as it is a professional activity: industrial, sales, artisans, agricultural, artistic, sports, or service provider, etc. The level of this tax is fixed at 300 euros per company plus 100 euros per employee with a ceiling of 5,000 euros. All companies must fill out a form that can be picked up at the Collectivity offices in Gustavia or found online at the Collectivity’s website at www.comstbarth.fr. A list of all personnel as of January 1 must be attached to the form. Payment can be made at the new treasury office, located in the new building on the site of the old fire station on Rue du Roi Oscar II in Gustavia.

The registration sticker for vehicles can be purchased at the Collectivity offices, the treasury building, the territorial police station, or from a special agent at the post office. The cost of the sticker ranges from 30 euros for a small motorcycle to 3,000 euros for a vehicle over 14 tons. For example, the owner of a car with a fiscal rating of seven to ten horsepower (based on a French taxation system) would pay 150 euros, and those with cars between 11 and 15 fiscal HP would pay 300 euros. At the February 12 meeting of the territorial council, a new bracket of 500 euros was created for vehicles between 16 and 25 fiscal HP, with the level of 2,000 euros now for vehicles over 25 fiscal HP. The different levels are listed on the Collectivity website, along with other official forms such as the request for an international driver’s license. The registration card for all vehicles is still obtained at the sous-prefecture, but it is now issued by the Collectivity, rather than the prefecture.

All visitors to the island must now pay at 5% guest tax based on the nightly rate for their hotel, villa, or apartment. This tax is collected directly by the management of the rentals.

Finally, the territorial council is applying a capital gains tax which went from 16% to 25% and which decrease after a property has been owned for 10 years.

Cécile Lucot


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