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4 years ago

Improving Access to HIV Services for Mobile and Migrant ...

Improving Access to HIV Services for Mobile and Migrant ...

Barbuda in 2009

Barbuda in 2009 implemented a series of measure that are included as innovative financing mechanisms within this study. For example micro taxes, of 0.2% of GDP on Alcohol, Tobacco and departure tax. In addition, there was a debt restructuring which has taken the place of debt swaps for health as suggested in the TOR. The tax breaks given to the on-line gambling industry in order to encourage investment in this area prevent the imposition of innovative financing mechanisms for HIV. The tax breaks already included in the regulation of the industry are, in fact quite innovative in that tax is capped at a maximum of USD50k per month and firms are not required to pay an additional tax irrespective of income. in terms of time or donor resource in the development of a feasibility study on the health financial instruments or mechanisms. For the most part the IMF Stand By Agreement implemented a series of innovative fiscal measures in 2009. In addition, the political will to implement a feasibility study is doubtful given that foreign investment is positively encouraged through tax holidays for foreign owned firms and the tax breaks given to the on-line gambling industry. The Fiscal Incentive Act is used as a vehicle to encourage foreign firms to establish themselves in Antigua & Barbuda and as such enjoy 15 year corporation tax holidays together with a range of other tax breaks. The holidays can then be further extended by a further 15 years. It is of note that these incentives were not changed even following the IMF standby agreement. It is assumed that Digicel and Cable & Wireless the foreign owned telephone companies enjoy these tax holidays. The Government of Antigua is already keen on pursuing some of the measures above to raise its revenue but more to remedy its fiscal deficit and The task for the project would then be not so much to set-up these mechanisms, but to mobilise an advocacy that watches out for 12

elieve itself from debt than broadening its health service base. As a result of the revenue crisis, the Government might have been cutting down on its social services and pulling back some of its planned social programmes. The Government has every motivation to explore every financing modality that we have identified during the RGE and seriously pursue them. compliance to globally-accepted rate for health appropriation and to ensure that the implementation of the 1997 Health Policy maintains the government’s commitment to the universal provision of health services as a right to all residents and citizens 13

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