overwhelmed by lack of reserves and the collapse of the collection In a context of slowdown in activity, this Wednesday the Government seized another cash with a provision that suspends benefits to importers and sets a sort of advance withholding tax to be collected $1 billion, the equivalent of half a month’s worth of funding.
The official initiative immediately ignited the alerts in the field of foreign trade and the business sectorwhere they described it as an advanced treasury “raising” in the midst of a drought, a tightening of inventories in the face of foreign exchange shortages, and a can of petrol on an already exceeds 100% year on year.
With general resolution 5339/2023, the AFIP suspended this Wednesday until 31 December 2023 the collection regime which allowed, through an exclusion certificate, to exempt large importing companies from paying value added tax (VAT) and of income tax.
According to the agency, this is a regime applicable to definitive import operations of goods, including those carried out in the free zone from third countries and from the free zone towards the general or special customs territory, subject to exemption. Thus, the the companies reached will no longer be exempt from such withholding taxes.
In this way, the Treasury canceled the existing certificates and extended the deadline for calculating the tax credit. “The suspension of this regime implies an approximate increase in the collection of taxes in customs terms of 20% in VAT and 6% in Profits. In terms of income, a figure close to 979 billion pesos is estimated,” said the AFIP.
On the one hand, the importers concerned must enter a profit perception of 6% even when they have estimated that the affidavit they will present for the current fiscal period will produce a favorable balance. That means, you will suffer withholding tax and have a tax credit that may be worthless in the event of the achievement of an unfavorable economic result.
As regards VAT, they must anticipate a perception of 20% if the products they import are taxed at 21% and 10% if they are taxed at 10.5%. But the perceptions entered today cannot be calculated until the ninth fiscal period following the import clearance date, implying that the tax credit will depreciate sharply.
“Today they imposed withholding taxes on profits and VAT on all imports up to the end of the year from 16 to 20%It doesn’t matter if you are exempt or have a credit balance. after 9 months (next government) these deductions can only be compensated. Basically after 9 months you lost 80% of its value,” said an electronics importer.
For tax official Sebastián Domínguez, the measure represents a significant “financial burden” for importers. “The perception of the VAT registered in March 2023 can only be calculated in the affidavit of December 2023. Analyzing the dates, it would seem that the objective is that the calculation is made when Argentina has another government,” he warned.
The calculation made by the importers is that from the new receipts, which they will now no longer be able to evade due to the suspension of the benefit, the total burden will be 48.5%. This is because to the 21% VAT and 2.5% Gross Income, it will now be necessary to add 20% VAT received and 6% Profit.
“Although technically the levies are not taxes because they are calculated on the account of the corresponding tax, in practice they can be transformed into taxes and this is what will happen in most cases because the importers have certificates so that they are not charged. apply, Dominguez said.
In this context, importers are already expecting 15% increases in their price lists, which in turn could generate a domino effect on supplier companies. And, on the other hand, too it could fuel inflation due to a reduction in the supply of imported products. Nor is a wave of legal claims ruled out.
The only imports that remain outside the resolution are those carried out by Micro and Small enterprises that have a MiPyME certificate, those carried out on behalf of the State and those exempt from national taxes by the 2023 Budget. It will concern medium and large ones, as well as small ones that do not can obtain the MiPyme certificate.
“They indicate two things: making imports more restrictive and, secondly, a collection purpose, it is a measure of great importance because many companies have worked with these exceptions to the perception of VAT and profits, it does nothing but continue to increase the cost of imported goods”explained Esteban Marzorati, specialist and former director of National Imports.
Indeed, in the technology sector, there is already a new wave of relief following import inventories and the recent reintroduction of the 16% tariff on most notebooks. So far in March, the prices of those devices so far in March increased to 67%, according to MRT advice.
Charles Arterburn is a seasoned business journalist for News Rebeat, where he provides comprehensive coverage of the latest trends and developments in the world of finance and economics.