Good news, everyone! You now have until November 21 to deposit (cash) that you have outside of Argentina as part of the government’s tax amnesty that was destined to bring in billions of dollars into the country. The need for the extension, however, is yet another signal from the government that the whitewashing effort has not yet had the success that was expected when it was approved by Congress earlier this year.
A quick reminder on what this tax amnesty or “whitewash” is: President Mauricio Macri’s administration is allowing Argentine citizens and residents to declare previously undeclared assets by paying a (usually) 10-percent penalty without being asked where that money came from. It was one of President Mauricio Macri’s most anticipated policies, but it seems to be more of a challenge than expected.
The deadline to declare any cash you may have hidden around was on October 31: now, it’s been moved to November 21. However, the national tax collecting agency AFIP has said that October 31 is now the deadline to open “Special Accounts” in order to deposit the money from abroad (originally, the deadline was on October 24).
“November 21 is the deadline to make the deposit in whatever bank the accounts were opened with. To do so, you need to have an AFIP receipt as proof and the receipt of payment for the Volante Electrónico de Pago (VEP): both should be signed by the [person making the deposit,” notes an AFIP press release.
According to the Tax Justice Network, Argentines have undeclared assets worth around US$400 billion outside the country. As a result, the amnesty was touted as critical to boost investment into the country and allowing the government to make good on its promises to increase pensions without boosting the fiscal deficit. Thus far, only US$150 million have entered the country since July, Clarín said earlier this month.
The government is blaming the banks for the lack of success: Finance Minister Alfonso Prat-Gay accused banks in early October of being overly cautious regarding potential future problems with the the Financial Information Unit (UIF) and the extra paperwork is making the process more cumbersome. However, the banks have countered by saying that extensive work is in fact being done and that the government, including the AFIP, should invest more in promoting the amnesty.
December 31 is the deadline to declare any assets or money abroad by paying a 10 percent tax, which then increases to 15 percent until March 31, 2017. Unless the deadlines are moved again, that is.
- Read more: Controversy Sparks Over Tax Amnesty Bill’s Fine Print Potentially Harming Freedom Of The Press