Value-added tax (VAT)
VAT is charged at the rates of 14% or 0% on the taxable supply of goods and services within Guyana by a registered person.
Zero-rated supplies include goods and services for export and certain medical supplies. Exempt supplies include international transport services, locally mined raw gold or diamonds, educational services, residential rent, financial services, and certain medical services, food items, and consumer products. The supply of machinery and equipment for obtaining, generating, and utilising electricity from renewable energy sources is all exempt.
Customs duty is paid on all goods imported into Guyana. The rates of duty vary between 5% and 150%, depending on the classification of the item in question. Rates of duty are highest on ‘luxury items’, which include perfumes.
Excise tax is imposed on specific imported or home-produced products. These products include alcoholic beverages, tobacco products, petroleum products, and motor vehicles.
Property tax is an annual tax charged on the net property of a person at the end of each year. 'Property' for the purpose of this tax refers to movable or immovable rights of any kind and effects of any kind. Net property is the amount by which the total value of the property exceeds the total value of all debt owned by the person at that time.
The tax is payable on 30 April at the following rates:
|Net property of a company (GYD*)||Property tax rate (%)|
|On the first 40 million||0|
|On every dollar of the next 20 million||½|
|On every dollar of the remainder||¾|
* Guyanese dollars
Stamp duty is levied at various rates on several instruments, including affidavits, statutory declarations, deeds of conveyance, mortgages, share transfers, awards of arbitrator, powers of attorney, agreements, bills of exchange, receipts, and policies of insurance.
Capital gains taxes
Capital gains tax is imposed at the rate of 20% on the net chargeable gains derived from the disposal of capital assets. Gains derived from the disposal of an asset within 12 months of its acquisition are treated as ordinary income and subject to corporate tax at the applicable rates. Gains derived from the disposal of assets held for more than 25 years are exempt from tax.
Employers are required to deduct and remit pay-as-you-earn (PAYE) to the tax authority by the 14th day of the month following that in which the employment income was paid. Individuals with chargeable income of less than GYD 1,560,000 per annum pay tax at the rate of 28%; where the chargeable income exceeds GYD 1,560,000 per annum, the incremental rate of tax applicable is 40%.
Employment income includes salaries, wages, overtime pay, leave pay, sick bonus, stipends, commissions, director fees, compensation for termination of service, and the estimated value of any accommodation provided.
Social security contributions
As an employer, a company is also required to deduct and remit social security contributions on behalf of employees. Social security contributions are due on monthly earnings of employees up to GYD 240,000 and weekly earnings up to GYD 50,385. The rates of contribution are 8.4% for employers and 5.6% for employees.