Raymond: Government made correct decision in Sandals tax matter

Minister in the Ministry of Finance, Doctor Ubaldus Raymond, has told St Lucia Times that the government acted correctly in  exempting Sandals Resorts International from withholding taxes, in a dispute that the company had with  with the government of Saint Lucia.

Raymond said the matter was brought before cabinet which deliberated on it and decided to end the dispute which been ongoing for a while.

“There are lots of details which I cannot discuss at this point in time, but I believe that cabinet made the correct decision in having the taxes exempted on behalf of Sandals,” the minister stated.

Raymond said it was his understanding that the sum of $24 million was involved.

“It is not taxes that Sandals owed. If Sandals or any entity owes the government any money then the government will have that entity to remit its taxes,” he asserted.

The minister told St Lucia Times that based on what was presented to cabinet, the cabinet made a decision that the taxes which were calculated as owed to the government were actually taxes that had to be exempted.

“I believe in all fairness, we were given all the evidence and in cabinet we look at everything – we ask the tough questions and when we make decisions in cabinet, I believe we always come up with the right decisions on behalf of the government and the people of Saint Lucia,” Raymond explained.

He said he believes that when the facts are presented to the public, people will understand that the government made the right decision.

“I don’t want it to look as though the government gave Sandals a break – that’s not the case,” the minister declared.

He expressed the view that generally,the public does not ask for details but people merely hear certain things and ‘move with it.’

Raymond said Sandals was given the exemption, but the important question is why.

“The question also is:  Did Sandals owe the government of Saint Lucia money and the government actually gave it back to Sandals? That’s not the case.” The minister explained.

The exemption covers the period 2001 to 2009.

Raymond said the government needs money and wherever the cash can be obtained the government will seek to get it.

“Taxes is not something we take lightly – if you owe the government, the government will come after you for its taxes. In fact the taxes do not belong to the government – they belong to the people of Saint Lucia,” he observed.




  1. Anonymous
    September 5, 2017 at 6:28 pm

    Don’t expect you to say anything else in your own selfish interest. every rope has an end, yours is in sight.

  2. EER
    September 5, 2017 at 6:34 pm

    I am more confused. when will the details become available to the public. A Broke gov’t gives more than 24 million dollars away. I hope that when public servants ask for something substantial we will not hear lame excuses like “THE COUNTRY IS BROKE”.

  3. Anonymous
    September 5, 2017 at 6:45 pm

    I AM MORE CONFUSED BY THE MINISTER’S STATEMENT. There are soooo many programmes we could not get funded in this country and then this. I hope that when public servants ask for their dues there will not be the excuse”THE GOVERNMENT IS BROKE”.

    1. Anonymous
      September 5, 2017 at 6:55 pm

      St.Lucia has been broke for years! Some governments are just better at hiding that fact than others.

      1. Lovence
        September 5, 2017 at 8:24 pm

        Great comment, whoever you are….

  4. Anonymous
    September 5, 2017 at 8:21 pm

    whats about the small st.lucians the government is owing?minister look for your people,the record is there to see and youall are turning a blind eye.but if the small man is owing,the police would be knocking on your door at 2am looking for the government money.what a shameless government,and youall are there for the poor and to make it worse they owing you and you are unemployed again,what you the government what the poor to do

  5. Anonymous
    September 5, 2017 at 8:56 pm

    I’m totally bewildered by the comments of Dr. Raymond. Governments usually withholds information that should be in the public domain from the public. Rest assured that the country would never be enlightened about this colossal sum of money. The rich has their snouts in the government trough.


  6. G poleon
    September 5, 2017 at 9:21 pm

    Ubaldus nice to SEE you trying to work hard.

  7. citizen
    September 5, 2017 at 9:43 pm

    I hope the local hotel owner get that same kind of treatment. What about tax payers government for years that are yet to receive their returns. Which ever government in power the citizens are always the ones getting shafted.

  8. Anonymous
    September 5, 2017 at 10:43 pm

    Ubaldus please stop appearing on TV , every time u do all I see is the pics of u with your erect penis jocking masturbating about to ejaculate in your office.just talk but pls don’t show your face on tv

  9. Anonymous
    September 5, 2017 at 10:55 pm

    Pure garbage spoken by the minister responsible to masturbate in the office of a prime minister. That’s all u can do Jock, masturbate, not very good as u got caught with ur pants down.

    1. Anonymous
      September 6, 2017 at 9:33 am


  10. Anonymous
    September 6, 2017 at 7:06 am

    Shameless. Yet the “COUNTRY IS BROKE” what next

  11. Anonymous
    September 6, 2017 at 11:40 am

    Did he say that Sandals didn’t owe the money.. Are you saying that Inland Revenue Department is incompetent.. Smh

    1. Dale Jacobs
      September 6, 2017 at 2:34 pm

      Don’t be surprised for that government said that much about our statistical department in relation to the last budget. Didn’t it relieve the department from its role in compiling our and hired some foreign firm to do it? Look at Chastanet: everybody is something in his office. In Chastanet’s view St Lucians are imcompetent.

    September 7, 2017 at 8:30 pm

    SOME ONE MAY BE GETTING PAID, UNDER THE TABLE, AS WE CALL IT . AH-BAR-TAB. I always thought the interest and well being of St,Lucia and the St. Lucian people came’s first. Time to investigate this government, i smell a few rats in the house.

  13. cecilia Benjamin Wilson
    September 9, 2017 at 1:05 pm

    Their all crocks,as usual.

  14. kanzi
    September 9, 2017 at 1:57 pm

    “Raymond said Sandals was given the exemption, but the important question is why.”

    the question WHY was not answered