Because of Jersey’s failure to collect the tax it needs to run its government – Something I have been predicting since 2005 – it has been forced to increase its GST ( or VAT as we in the UK know it) from 3% to 5% in the next few weeks.
There are, fortunately, some members of the States of Jersey who are of independent mind and who seek to represent the people of the island. Some of them fought very hard to ensure that this increase in GST was matched by the introduction of zero rating on essential items that ordinary people cannot do without. Things like food, for example, which is zero rated in the UK but which has been subject to GST in Jersey.
They took this battle into the States itself, and yesterday they lost. The vote to impose GST on almost all transactions in Jersey was passed by 29 votes to 22. It does, of course remain the case that such essential items as marine fuel for yachts are not charged to GST, but food that ordinary people have to buy is taxed. This is justice, Jersey style.
The tax burden is shifted from the tax abusers who use the island to avoid their obligations elsewhere in the world onto the ordinary people who live there.
The vote does however show the power of those ordinary people is rising. Sometime soon, as their government declines into economic failure due to the collapse of their corporate tax receipts as a consequence of the zero/ 10 tax policy which they are pursuing, despite Europe’s opposition, then I suspect the people of Jersey will overturn the rotten government that they have suffered for so long. In the meantime, they suffer. And that is why I continue to take an interest in their affairs.