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Costa Rica May Soon Offer Tax-Breaks Beyond Free Trade Zones

Lawmakers in Costa Rica are reportedly debating a legislative bill designed to offer tax exemptions to foreign companies located beyond the country’s free trade zones.

Introduced by legislator Aida Montiel, the legislative bill specifically talks about attracting investments in the country’s high-tech sector.  The country’s Chamber of Information and Communication Technologies (CAMTIC) has described the bill as “necessary”.

Not very company operating outside of free trade zones can take advantage of the proposed changes, though.

To get the tax-breaks, the foreign company need to invest more than US$100,000 and create jobs for at least 20 Costa Ricans. More important still, its local headcount should increase by 10% every year from the 5th year onwards.

Some industry experts say the proposed law would not help Costa Rica, pointing to the lack of high skilled workers in the country.

Costa Rica is only the latest country in Latin America to change its free trade zone laws in the light of the transformative changes brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic in the global marketplace.

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Countries including Uruguay and Colombia have also altered their FTZ laws recently, paving the way for companies operating there to transition their employees to home environment.

Narayan Ammachchi

News Editor for Nearshore Americas, Narayan Ammachchi is a career journalist with a decade of experience in politics and international business. He works out of his base in the Indian Silicon City of Bangalore.

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