"In Costa Rica civil servants earn the most out of all Latin American countries, which is disproportionate to the economic and fiscal reality of the country."
An increase in resources for debt repayment, education and pensions account for the 12% increase in the 2017 budget compared to the 2016 budget.
According to a statement by the Ministry of Finance,"... the Bill for Fiscal Year 2017 is in the amount of ¢8.9 billion and is 12.1% higher than in 2016 ... due mainly to an increase in the debt settlement, resources for education and for the Ministry of Public Works and Transport. "
The regional trade fair for franchises 'Expofranquicias 2016', will be held on 12th and 13th of May in Costa Rica.
From a statement issued by the Chamber of Commerce of Costa Rica:
Costa Rica, March 14, 2016. More than 100 exhibiting companies and 4,000 investors from the Caribbean, North, Central and South America and Europe, will participate in the seventh version of the only regional trade fair for franchises: Expofranquicia, which will be held on 12th and 13th of May in Costa Rica with the aim of promoting the opening of new franchises in the region.
Traders, industrialists and entrepreneurs in the agro sector disagree with the position of the main private sector union over the negotiation of new taxes.
Three business unions have ratified their opposition to new taxes in Costa Rica and have made known their total lack of empathy with the way the Uccaep, an organization that unites most of the unions in the private sector, has dealt with the Solis administration over tax issues, the negotiation of a shareholder register proposed by the government and other aspects related to the fiscal problems affecting the country.
Projections for sectors such as retail, real estate and franchising anticipate a better year for entrepreneurs, provided that new taxes are not approved.
The moderate expectations of entrepreneurs in Costa Rica in recent years took a positive spin at the beginning of 2016. However, the semblance of confidence is fragile, depending on the response of the government, particularly on fiscal issues, said Francisco Llobet, President of the Chamber of Commerce of Costa Rica to Elfinancierocr.com , when referring to the creation of new taxes.
The private sector is divided between those who believe there is a need to devalue the colon against the dollar in order to regain competitiveness, and those who think that foreign exchange market intervention would worsen the overall situation.
While competitors such as Colombia, Mexico and other Latin American countries have chosen to devalue their currencies to improve their competitiveness at a time when the global economy is failing to recover, Costa Rica's export sector is lamenting the fact that added to the increase in production costs that it must face, is an appreciated exchange rate that undermines the real value of exports.
Once again the Presidency has spoken out to calm investors denying the insinuations of a Deputy Minister related to opening up the discussion on the free trade zone regime.
According to an article in Crhoy.com, the Deputy Minister of Labour, Harold Villegas, mentioned in the framework of the International Forum of Social Solidarity Economy that "as a society we should discuss the activities that should or should not be tax-free and although free zones functioned well in a moment of history, it's time to move towards a system of greater tax justice and for a more open discussion to take place. "
A bill creates the regime of "Social Solidarity Economy", which creates exemptions from virtually all taxes for companies registered in the scheme.
The vice president of the Chamber of Commerce of Costa Rica, Victor Ruiz, said that "... the model of the ESS (Social Solidarity Economy) represents unfair competition against formal private companies and contributes nothing to the serious fiscal problems of the country because it reduces the question of tax collection. "
Businessmen in Costa Rica recognize the progress made by the government, but are calling for an acceleration in the process to eliminate the duplication of paperwork which still prevails in several institutions.
Currently we have a clear agenda to deal with the Ministry of Agriculture and the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry regarding outstanding issues and the reduction in the number of requirements for starting a business and those for established businesses.
The private sector in Costa Rica is having doubts over the ability of the Treasury to prevent information leaks, if approval is given to a requirement for companies to disclose shareholder information.
The business sector fears that the authorities will not be able to control possible leaks of confidential data which companies must provide if the decree proposed by the Directorate General of Taxation is approved. They claim that in the past information was and the actions were not punished in any way. Also, if the main objective is to verify the payment of transfer tax they are questioning why "... they are asking for information from all companies, whether or not they have goods that they can transfer. "
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