VAT increase impacts Independence sales

By NATARIO McKENZIE

Tribune Business Reporter

nmckenzie@tribunemedia.net

The value-added tax (VAT) rate increase has affected consumer confidence and purchasing for this year's Independence celebrations, a well-known businessman has revealed.

Scott Farrington, president of Suntee Uniforms and Promotional Marketing, told Tribune Business that customer demand and sales remained high despite the impact from the increase to 12 percent VAT.

"Over the years, Suntee has built an amazing reputation for its authentically Bahamian Independence Day designs, so customer demand and sales remain high this year," Mr Farrington said. "Suntee's designs are always stylish, always unique - and most importantly - always Bahamian, and Bahamians appreciate these qualities.

"The increase of the VAT rate has affected consumer confidence and purchasing. Suntee has waived the full VAT on Independence apparel for the last week as a 'thank you' to our customers for supporting Suntee for 35 years. Independence is when Bahamians wave our flags and wear our Independence apparel to show our pride, strength and love for this country, and Suntee is proud to supply products."

The much anticipated Independence Collection from Bahari Bahamas has been released just in time for the 45th anniversary of Independence.

The Bahamian fashion brand, over the weekend, announced the the release of its 5th Independence Collection. "The inspiration for this year's collection came from us wanting to create a stylized-sketch aesthetic, and a collage of hand-drawn elements of flora, fauna, culture, maritime and national pride," said brand manager, Kyle Williams.

"Over the past five years, Bahamians have grown to expect a dynamic release from Bahari for the independence season. It's always an exciting time as Bahamians from all walks of life flood our three locations in support. This year Bahamians definitely started their Bahari shopping earlier than year's past; ensuring that they aren't met with empty shelves and sold out signs, as is often the case with new Bahari collections."