Costa Rica offers tax breaks for energy-efficient cars
The Costa Rican government plans to reduce the taxes paid by energy-efficient and low-emission cars. This tax break will cover hybrids, electrics, and those that are powered by biofuels such as ethanol. Automobiles in Costa Rica currently pay between 35% to 53% worth of consumption tax. The tax rate varies based on the car type, engine size and model.
Friday, April 18, 2008
The draft of the executive decree is now being reviewed by the Ministry of Energy and the Environment (MINAE), Costa Rica’s EPA, and will then be reviewed by the Ministerio de Hacienda - similar to the IRS. Julio Matamoros, the MINAE vice minister informed La Nación that the tax reduction will apply to new and used cars and some models may become totally tax free.
Incentives to buy cars that use environmentally friendly fuels will have to wait at least another two months. Measures that would exempt such cars from taxes are moving forward, but very slowly, as is the tightening of restrictions allowing old foreign cars into the country.
The tax exemption enjoyed by these vehicles is one of the factors driving their sales in the country, where three agencies are now marketing them and two are preparing their market entry.
Grupo Q of El Salvador opened Central America's largest automobile service center in Costa Rica. The 1,555 square meters center can handle 15 vehicles at a time, but plans are already afoot to expand capacity.
The Venezuelan chain of hardware stores will open its third store next week, in the province of Heredia.
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