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Costa Rica aims to implement e-invoicing 100% in 2017

17/06/2016

The goal set by the Government of Costa Rica for 2021 is to include the country in the digital realm. This ambitious challenge was given form last year in the National Telecommunications Development Plan (PNDT), whose main lines of action include the rollout of e-government. The aim is to expedite the process by using digital channels.

To this end, widespread massive use of the Electronic Invoicing System has become one of the closest milestones. By 2017, the Costa Rican authorities want implementation of this technology to be 100%. To achieve this, the technical and operational specifications must be drawn up throughout 2016, while making the appropriate adjustments and carrying out the necessary technological developments.

Why does Costa Rica want to expand the use of e-billing?

On one hand, massive use of this technology will allow the country to advance toward digital inclusion, the challenge proposed for 2021. But the most important thing is that the fight against tax evasion will be more effective, as the system optimizes tax control throughout the process. In fact, other Latin American countries like Mexico or Brazil have already achieved beneficial outcomes with this strategy.

On the other, e-invoicing has direct benefits for taxpayers. With this system, economic costs are minimized by cutting down the use of paper, printing, postal forwarding and physical storage. Moreover, this is a technology that opens up the doors to e-commerce and internationalization. Companies signing up to e-invoicing have greater opportunities both to grow outside the country and to take the technological leap in other aspects of the business.

e-Invoicing today

As it stands today, Costa Rican companies are not required to apply this technology. The only ones joining the system do so voluntarily, convinced of the benefits it can bring them. According to the Ministry of Finance, roughly 4600 companies and professionals in the country are currently using e-invoicing. However, the method may soon become mandatory, with a view to achieving the government target of 100% implementation by 2017.

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