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Colombia rolls out e-Invoicing pilot in January


The start-up date is now set for the e-invoicing pilot project in Colombia. Last November 24, DIAN Control Management Division Director, Leonardo Sicard, announced Decree 2242, signed by the President of the Republic. This document “regulates the issuance and interoperability conditions of electronic invoicing for widespread implementation and fiscal control purposes.”

The trial period is due to start in January with a group composed of 25 to 30 of the country’s big businesses. Following this, gradual widespread rollout of e-invoicing is expected among Colombian taxpayers as of 2017. The regulation announced by the DIAN lays the foundation for this technological leap. In addition, the technical and fiscal aspects of the project will soon be regulated.

The ruling states that the DIAN shall designate the natural or legal persons required to issue electronic invoicing in accordance with the Tax Code. They shall be allowed a 6 month deadline for migration to the new procedure. Taxpayers may also apply to join the new e-billing scheme on a voluntary basis.

Against evasion

The rollout of e-invoicing will enable the DIAN to keep real-time records of invoices. Bear in mind that this system allows direct and automatic connection between companies and the tax agency, so the tax information is provided immediately. The aim is to improve control on tax affairs, as the government estimates that each year the country fails to receive more than 40 billion pesos. In fact, the rate of VAT evasion is placed at around 22%.

In addition, article 9 of Decree 2242 puts forward the possibility that the DIAN may request additional information on billing, such as auxiliary recording of sales and purchases. In other words, in the future the authorities may seek to further strengthen fiscal control through the use of technology, as occurred in countries such as Brazil, Chile and Peru, among other nations in Latin America.

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