Sunday 2 April 2023

Blaming the other guy: President Chaves describes the previous government as “irresponsible and negligent”

Costa Rica is included in the European Union's list of tax havens

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01 April 2023 - At The Banks - BCCR

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QCOSTARICA – President Rodrigo Chaves described the previous government as “irresponsible and negligent”, due to the commitment assumed with the European Union to approve the global income project before the end of 2022.

Finance Minister, Nogui Acosta (left) and president Rodrigo Chaves (right) during the weekly press conference on February 15, 2023. Photo Casa Presidencial

This week, Costa Rica made the list of tax havens for the European Union, so in effect the country could be individually sanctioned by those nations, affecting investment and international cooperation.

For Chaves, the previous administration should not have committed itself to the approval and signing of the Law, taking into account that there would be a change of government in May of that year.

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This line is similar to that of the current Minister of Finance, Nogui Acosta, who stated publicly that his predecessor did not inform of the commitment and that it would have been the responsibility of the new government in May to make a commitment, and the only responsible action of the previous administration was to request an extension of the deadline.

The Chaves government said this week it will present draft legislation for a Global Income Law in March of this year, and confirmed that it will not seek to process it quickly, due to the relevance of the initiative.

According to Casa Presidencial, Costa Rica is expected to be removed from the European Union’s gray list in October.

But that will be up to Legislative Assembly, leaving the responsibility of that happening in the hands of legislators.

In a press conference on Wednesday, both Chaves and Acosta affirmed that the Executive Branch will submit a legislative proposal “so that the legislators do their job” and discuss the tax amendment that the European bloc demands.

Costa Rican legislation exempts people from paying taxes on earnings obtained abroad through passive income (such as securities), which facilitates double non-taxation (that a person does not pay taxes in one country or another).

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