Local real estate’s $2.3m tax bill

Real estate agents and salespersons at the 2018 Real Estate Conference for Agents and Salespersons at the Pearl Resort. Picture: MONIKA SINGH

THE real estate industry in the country owes about $2.3 million in taxes to the Fiji Revenue and Customs Service and agents have been called on to comply with the taxation regulations.

Speaking at the 2018 Real Estate conference for agents and salespersons at Pearl Resort yesterday, FRCS chief assessor Mohammed Hanif revealed that out of more than 230 salespersons and licensed real estate agents in the country, only some were registered with the FRCS.

Mr Hanif called on the industry to encourage its agents and salespersons to register with the FRCS and comply with the taxation requirements.

The theme for the conference was “realtors — professionalism and ethics” and chief guest and Minister for Industry, Trade and Tourism Faiyaz Koya said it was their duty as real estate agents to work within the ambits of the law and ensure that the real estate industry was clean of unscrupulous dealers.

“The much-awaited code of ethics will address this and you must thoroughly understand what the code provides in the carrying out of your duties in a professional manner.

“Regulatory authorities like the REALB and the Fijian Consumer and Competition Commission (FCCC) will work closely to target misleading and deceptive behaviour in the property industry as a whole,” he said.

Real Estate Agents Licensing Board chairman Dr Abdul Hassan said there were about 230 salespersons and licensed real estate agents in Fiji.

Dr Hassan said REALB was in negotiation with the University of the South Pacific to develop salespersons training module to all existing and new salespersons for further enhance the much-needed skills in property transaction dealings, knowledge of the current laws in place and other important areas to be covered.

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