Assembly Concluded First Tax Reform Debate
8 noviembre 2019

On November 7, the plenary session of the National Assembly concluded the first debate of the Tax Reform Bill, having included the stipulation that digital platforms will charge VAT, while intermediary companies will act as withholding agents in the payment process. The Economic Regime Committee will analyze and incorporate the observations made by the legislators during their meetings to draft the report for the second debate. It is expected that the committee will have the report ready in the next few days.

During the three days of the session, the legislators agreed that it is essential to “ensure accounts and tax policy are transparent”. They argued that it would make more sense to reach agreements to improve and even reword the text in order to avoid it going through the Ministry of Law. The legislators also expressed concern about the final destination of the resources collected by means of this law.

Regarding tax policy, they considered that the Internal Revenue Service should improve its control mechanisms to counter tax evasion and bolster resources for the State. They also stated that tax collection should be improved, as well as the recovery of funds from illegal activities, and that the measure should envisage the provision of economic, physical and legal security.

At the end of the session, committee chairman Daniel Mendoza (ruling party), announced that they intended to identify the issues gaining consensus as well as those that failed to do so. He pointed out that, “they could propose to the plenary a divided vote for the Assembly to pronounce itself”. The committee will have to compile all the observations made during the plenary session and prepare a new report for the second debate.