Business Tax

Any operation that is performed in Belize is required to pay business tax, The table below indicates those businesses in which business tax is applicable.

BUSINESS TAX IS APPLICABLE TO: BUSINESS TAX IS NOT APPLICABLE TO:
Individuals practicing his profession or firm in Belize Employee,on their employment income
Partnerships Receipts of Export Processing Zone businesses
Companies/Corporations operating in Belize Winnings from Boledo, Jackpot Lottery or any other
Lottery where the amount is less than $1,500 in value
Consultants, both Local (Resident) and Foreign (Non-Residents) Interest from notes or bonds issued by the Government of Belize
Any person who is in the business of providing Goods and Services in Belize Rental receipts less than $1,650 per month
Organizations based on their taxable receipts Interest on Savings and Term Deposits, if interest is not the income of a financial institution/investment company
Tour Operators, Tour Guides, Travel Agents, Commissions, Rental, Contracts, Dividends, Taxation of Non-Residents, Fishing, Books and Records of Accounts, Relationship to Sales Tax Receipts from Credit Unions, Charitable & Educational Institutions of a Public Character, Friendly Societies, Local Authorities, Religious Bodies and Statutory Boards.

Tax Rates

Businesses, companies, and self-employed persons are liable to pay business tax. These rates vary according to business classification:

  • Receipts from radio, on-air television, newspaper business, domestic airline business and service stations (Sale of Fuel and Lubricants); at 1.75%
  • Receipts of entities licensed to provide telecommunication services that offer real time voice services; 19%
  • Receipts from “Other Trade & Business” (items not otherwise specifically mentioned in the Act); at 1.75%
  • Rents, royalties, premiums and other receipts from real property; at 3%
  • Income from profession, vocations or occupation; at 6%
  • Earnings of an insurance company; at 1.75%
  • Receipts of institutions licensed under the Banks and Financial Institutions Act ; at 15%
  • Financial Institutions within a PIC group now pay 8% on their receipts, which previously were taxable at 4%
  • Gross earnings from gaming establishments and casinos taxable at 15%
  • Real Estate agents are taxable at 15% on their gross commissions
  • Receipts of entities providing electricity services; at 6.5%

Exemptions

as prescribed by the Income and Business Tax Act:

  • Receipts of any local authority where income is not derived from a trade or business managed by the local authority.
  • Earnings of any ecclesiastical, charitable or educational institutions
  • Any pension paid by any person or authority outside Belize to a retired person who is residing in Belize.
  • Payments received under any social security scheme or fund, whether made by a person resident in Belize or abroad, provided such payment are prove to the satisfaction of the Commissioner to be social security payments.
  • Interest from any debentures, treasury bills, treasury notes or bonds issued by or under the authority of the Government of Belize.
  • Interest payable by any person on capital used in specified development industries or projects
  • Interest payable by the Government on monies borrowed by it from, or debts owed by it to, sources outside Belize.
  • Earnings for other trade or business of less than $75,000 per annum and $25,600 for professions, vocations or occupations..
  • The income from a scholarship, exhibition, bursary or any other similar educational donations held by a person receiving full time instruction at a university, college, school or other educational institutions.

Deductions

General Sales Tax must be deducted from total sales/receipts to arrive at Business Tax receipts:

  • General SalesTax collected
  • Charitable contributions of a minimum of $500.00 and up to $30,000.00 per year
  • Earnings Replacement Duty on fuel paid on importation
  • Excise duty
  • Supply sales by the quantity fuel importer to another quantity fuel supplier
  • Funds received as an agent.
  • AccommodationTax provided for under the Hotels & Accommodation Act

The Business Tax Return and any taxes due must be filed by the 15th day of each month, covering all receipts for the previous month.

Penalties

Penalties are accounted for those individual or organizations who do not comply with the filing and payment deadlines and they are as follows:

  • Late orNon-Filing – 10% of the tax due every month or part of the month that thereturn remains outstanding, minimum of $10.00 for a maximum of twenty-four (24)months.
  • Late or Non-Payment – a charge of 1.5% per month on all unpaid balance from the time itwas submitted to date of payment.
  • Failure toFile a return – A fine of at least $10,000 will be charged if taxpayers fail toreturn a file or two year imprisonment.

Taxation to Non-Residents

All non-CARICOM residents, who have any taxable receipts originating from Belize, or in respect of any service provided in Belize, are required to pay business taxes as follows:.

Dividends 15%
Insurance Premiums 25%
Interest on Loans 15%
Management fees 25%
Rental of plant and equipment 25%
Technical Services 25%

Generally CARICOM residents pay at 15% on the same services.


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