Bill to repeal controversial tax in Samoa to be discussed in Parliament

A bill to repeal Samoa's 2017 income tax amendment act requiring church ministers to pay income taxes on donations by church members, will be discussed in Parliament today.

The bill has been in parliamentary committee stages with the Bills Committee since it was tabled late last year.

The amendment by the FAST party government follows an election promise that is credited with securing the vote of members of the Congregational Christian Church, and a pivotal part of the upset change of government.

A consultative meeting between the new government and all church denominations in Samoa last November confirmed they were all in favor of dumping the tax introduced by the former HRPP government.

The CCCS church ministers were the only ones who had boycotted the tax resulting in some ministers being taken to court.

Church ministers and the Head of State were the only people exempt from paying income taxes before the tax amendment.


Photo: RNZ Pacific /Autagavaia Tipi Autagavaia Ccaption: Samoa's parliament