Colón, Panama: Tax on Distribution of Goods

The private sector is describing as illegal a new municipal tax on vehicles distributing goods in Colon, which ranges from between $15 and $100 depending on the commercial sector.

Friday, November 28, 2014

The measure was opposed by the Chamber of Commerce, Industries and Agriculture of Panama, who argues that it could be replicated by other municipalities, hurting business. However, city officials say the tax has a legal basis.

The director of Ornato, Health and Public Order, Rigoberto Torres, told that "... Article 74 of Law No. 106 of 1973 states that municipalities may impose taxes and contributions on all industrial, commercial or profit-making activities of any kind carried out in the district. Besides the tax is not against companies, but is for trucks carrying out the activity in the district of Colon. "

A consultant for the Municipal District Council of Arraiján, Claudia Barcenas, added "... Due to a lack of funds municipalities are seeking measures that are not viable, from a legal point of view. Municipalities should not levy taxes on economic activities that already paid for where they are registered. The laws and Constitution are clear in emphasizing what taxes should be charged by municipalities because they are not sovereign in terms of taxation. "

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Luis Cucalón, from the Economy Ministry, said that "all the proposals will be analyzed by a commission headed by MEF, and all viable propositions will be taken into consideration".