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Argentina cuts IT import tax

February 27, 2017

Argentina cuts IT import taxThe Argentinian government has cut its import tax for IT in an attempt to “bring down the price of technology”.

The Buenos Aires Herald reported that the cuts are about decreasing the cost of technology, and that the administration has downplayed the concerns about jobs because of the expectation that prices of laptops and computers will fall. The tax cuts are effective from 1 April, and prices have already started to fall, but the government feels that this is “essential to boosting the prospects of [SMBs]”.

The cuts will affect 72 products, but does not include mobile phones or “products bought abroad” by consumers who want to bring them back. Buyers of technology have been crossing the border into Chile to buy the cheaper goods, as in the past laptops, tablets and desktops were taxed at 35 percent and parts at 12 percent, but this new directive includes all of the above as well as printers and components like servers and LED parts.

Production Minister Francisco Cabrera, who signed the tax relief decree, said: “Families, small-and-medium sized businesses and entrepreneurs need computers to study, grow and develop. The state has to be present in order to guarantee access to technology and create more jobs, which is the central objective in order to head toward zero poverty.”

He also spoke about employees that may be laid off due to the increase of products brought into Argentina, and said “we are going to accompany them on this path with training and concrete tools to benefit the investment projects that hire these workers”. Both labour and production ministries are “working together to find jobs for laid-off workers”, but some unions and businesses have “expressed their concerns about the plans, arguing that sales have been declining in recent months after the government announced that it would be cutting import taxes”.

 

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