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The national economy is improving

by Pointe Xpress
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More signs are becoming evident that the economy is on an upward trajectory as government revenues over the past year have continued to increase.

Government’s collections from the Inland Revenue Department (IRD) recorded a significant increase in 2022 compared with 2021.

According to the IRD, its 2022 collections exceeded the previous year by nearly $40 million.

Figures made available to Pointe Xpress by the Commissioner of the IRD, Ralph Warner, showed that in 2021, EC$333.4 million in revenue was collected.

In 2022, however, that figure jumped to EC$371.4 million, an increase of $38 million.

According to Warner, improved collection of the Antigua Barbuda Sales Tax (ABSt) was the greatest contributor to the gains recorded.

Coupled with data released last week by the Customs Division, these figures point to greater collections for the government and are a positive indication that the economy is continuing to expand as a result of robust economic activity.

Comptroller of Customs, Raju Boddu, has reported that for the year just ended, collections topped EC$382.09 million compared to 2021 when EC$338.62 million, an increase of EC$43.47 million or 12.84 percent, was recorded.

Boddu described 2022 as “a recovery year” adding that the division had been able to “claw” its way back’ to near its pre-COVID revenue performance.

“The pre-COVID year yielded EC$389.55 million, which means that the gap was only EC$7.46 million, or 1.96% less than 2019,” Boddu said.

Antigua and Barbuda’s recovery from the two-year COVID-19 pandemic, and its negative economic impact, appears to be firmly set on the road to full recovery as this year’s figures are expected to surpass the records set in 2019.

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