Last September, The Bubble reported on the Government’s plan to scrap the 35% importation tax on laptops bought overseas. In yesterday’s Official Bulletin, the government essentially got down on one knee and made the whole thing official.
A “cero por ciento” (zero percent) tax rate, was announced for “goods classed as computing or telecommunication technology…until 31st December 2021.”
To recap, the reasoning behind the decision is to “increase competition and productivity, and attract greater investment in the sector by way of decreasing the production costs and increasing supply in the local market.” The bulletin stresses that “access to new technology is essential to Argentina’s economic and social development,” and that better quality brands are more energy efficient and could help drive up productivity.
Despite the obvious advantages for consumers, the decision has been met with criticism, mainly from unions, including the Metal Workers Union and IT companies. As it becomes cheaper to purchase abroad, and fewer laptops are produced internally, in Argentina, members of the workforce tasked with assembling laptop parts fear for the future of their jobs. Yet the Government aims to combat this with “industrial restructuring.” Workers will not face job cuts, but rather will be assigned other products to assemble.
The main idea at play here is that the national workforce should work on the products that Argentina holds a more competitive share in producing, such as household appliances and other electronic devices.