States of Jersey puts aside £7m for LVCR job losses

Packages being sorted before posting
Image caption Hundreds of jobs are thought to be at risk due to the ending of LVCR by the UK government

More than £7m has been put aside by the States to help mail order industry workers in Jersey.

Hundreds of jobs are thought to be at risk due to the end of an agreement allowing Channel Island companies to sell goods tax-free to UK customers.

It is thought every 100 people who lose their job will cost Jersey's government about £800,000.

Last week the Channel Islands failed to stop the UK government scrapping Low Value Consignment Relief (LVCR).

In 1983 LVCR was brought in to speed up the transit of low-value goods, which might otherwise be delayed by customs, and to reduce costs as collecting VAT on small-value items was found to be higher than the value of tax it brought in.

'Not discriminatory'

The relief means no VAT is charged on any goods valued less than £15 when sent from anywhere outside of the European Union to the UK.

The UK High Court ruled last week that ending LVCR for just the Channel Islands and not other non-EU members from 1 April was not discriminatory.

Speaking in the States on Tuesday, the Economic Development Minister, Senator Alan Maclean, said he would do all he could to support those affected by the end of VAT relief.

He said: "In the weeks and months ahead we must now concentrate on supporting the industry to adapt.

"Most importantly we must support people working in our fulfilment sector who may have to find new employment."

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