COSTA RICA NEWS – Costa Rica’s National Tourism Chamber (CANATUR) has challenged the government’s decision to start subjecting all tourism activities to the sales tax.
The Ministerio de Hacienda (Financing Ministry) recently issued a decree reinterpreting Article 1 of the Sales Tax Law. Pursuant to the decree the 13%sales tax will be retroactively levied on all tourism businesses from 2009, including some that were previously exempt, such as hiking, bird-watching and ziplining.
Tourism businesses have been given until the end of this month to comply with the decree.
Last month, Finance Minister, Helio Fallas, also announced a 13% sales tax on tourism rentals – all rentals less than one month, ie, condominiums, beach houses and guest rooms. Owners of properties renting on a short term basis are responsible for the collection and submisstion of the sales tax. Related: Sales Tax on Vacation Rentals Stays; Finance Minister
CANATUR has called for the Hacienda decree to be overturned, arguing that it is unfair and will force many businesses to shut down.
The government has met with officials from CANATUR to discuss solutions to the dispute, but the two sides have not yet reached an agreement.