Worth exploring

Worth exploring

Monday’s story on page 7 out of Marigot should not go unnoticed on the Dutch side. The Collectivité legislated the application of turnover tax TGCA for seasonal rentals.

This allows intermediaries such as digital platforms to declare and pay the TGCA due on related transactions, not the short-term tenant. The platforms can thus offer an additional service but must inform clients of their fiscal obligation via a hyperlink dedicated to the territory’s taxation website and send in an annual summary corresponding to these transactions.

St. Maarten has been talking about a fiscal agreement with online vacation rental players like Airbnb, but so far without success. Now there are plans to introduce a non-resident property tax, partly based on the premise that many foreign owners rent theirs out when off-island and are not taxed on money made here.

Although this was reportedly done in Bonaire too, the local real estate sector is very concerned about the impact on the vacation homes market, which they say is also a significant part of the island’s tourism product.

Besides, residents also rent out visitor accommodations and it’s safe to assume many don’t report the income either. Working with the platforms in question can help enhance fiscal compliance in that sense.

Perhaps one does not have to exclude the other. Regardless, exactly what the French side is doing certainly seems worth exploring.