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Costa Rica: Guidance for food producers and exporters, reduced VAT rate

Costa Rica: Guidance for food producers and exporters

The tax authority issued guidance (DGT-DGH-R-031-2019) concerning the registration process for those involved in exporting, marketing, distributing, and producing food and concerning the procedure for applying for the reduced rate of or exemption from the value added tax (VAT).


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In general, taxpayers that realize at least 75% of their total sales from their food-related operations (including exports operations) will be eligible to participate. Taxpayers listed in the registry can benefit from the reduced or exempt VAT rate of their taxable purchases. For certain producers, a VAT rate of 1% could be applied. For exporters, their purchases will be exempt from VAT.

The guidance sets forth the following:

  • Requirements for inclusion in the registry
  • Application form
  • Determination of the percentage of operations
  • Period of time of the registration validity
  • Application process for the VAT exemption or reduced rate

The effective date of the resolution is 24 June 2019.

Read a June 2019 report (Spanish and English) [PDF 35 KB] prepared by the KPMG member firm in Costa Rica

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