The Maldives Inland Revenue Authority collected MVR1.51 billion (US$98 million) in taxes during March, 15.1 percent below forecast and down 2.1 percent from the same period last year.
The tax authority blamed non-payment of Goods and Services Tax for the decrease in revenue, despite a 16 percent increase in tourist arrivals.
The revenue was below forecast “because of the decrease in the collection of GST and Tourism Land rent due to non-payment of some taxpayers,” MIRA said.
GST accounted for 48.4 percent of total revenue followed by Tourism Land Rent (MVR355.86 million or 23. percent), Business Profit Tax (MVR87.04 million or 5.8 percent), Green Tax (MVR83.17 million or 5.5 percent) and Airport Development Fee (MVR67.33 million or 4.5 percent).
At the end of March, total revenue reached MVR6.1 billion of MVR23.3 billion projected as revenue and grants for 2019, according to the finance ministry’s weekly fiscal update.
A quarter came from non-tax revenue such as import duties.
During the first quarter of the year, government spending reached MVR5.1 billion from the MVR27.3 billion expenditure approved for the year.
“The majority of expenditure during this period was spent on recurrent expenditure; salaries and wages, and allowances to employees. Notable spending on capital expenditure was for [the public sector investment programme] and investment outlays,” the finance ministry explained.
“The overall balance for the period is a surplus of MVR1,078.5 million, as revenue received was higher than expenditure. Net Issuance for the week 24 to 28 March 2019 is a net issuance of MVR212.0 million. Government securities valued at MVR 450.0 million matured during the week while MVR662.0 million was issued.”