Honduras Tax Collection Authority “DEI” Exceeds 2015 Collections Target

The current collection potential exceeds 52% because of fraud and smuggling of goods.

Two years ago it was unrealistic to think about fulfilling the annual tax collection goal in Honduras. Today that lies behind us as fiscal year 2015 collections activity has exceeded 100%.

Honduras "DEI" - Direccion Ejecutiva de Ingresos

Honduras “DEI” – Direccion Ejecutiva de Ingresos
2015 Record Year for Tax Collections

As of December 16, 2015 collections amounted to 71,580 million Lempiras (approximately $3.2 billion Dollars), which means a 6,881.2 million Lempira  or approximately $306.5 million Dollar increase compared with the figure recorded at the end of 2014, when 64,698.8 million Lempiras, equivalent to approximately $2.9 billion Dollars had been recorded.

Miriam Guzman, head of the Executive Directorate of Revenue (DEI)(Direccion Ejecutiva de Ingresos), said that this year was a very good year for collection of tax revenue, particularly thanks to the improvement in the collection of income tax (ISR), which had a negative performance for 10 years.

Honduras "DEI" - Director Miriam Guzman

Miriam Guzman, Director of the Executive Directorate of Revenue

However, according to the director, there is still a potential to collect 52% more than what is currently being collected, because there is a strong amount of fraud and smuggling of goods.

There is also a large amount of taxes that are in arrears that the institution has carried for years.

The achievements are from the application of certain tax measures of the present government, and the adoption of the electronic system, in force since last April. Billing has greatly influenced the collections process.

Also influencing the increase is the sales tax (ISV) which was increased from 12% to 15% in January 2014; the collection of 1.5% income tax, and exacerbating the net income of the companies reporting sales exceeding 10 million Lempiras; as well as the rising fuel tax, designated as the “aporte vial” or “roads funding”, which represents the third largest source of revenue for the treasury.

Notable Observations
The private sector has rejected the measures, arguing that the tax burden deters investment and job creation in the country.

Reports from the Central American Monetary Council (CMC), indicate that the tax burden in Honduras is the highest in the region.

The approved 2015 fiscal year budget: the government forecast was 66,571 million Lempiras in taxes.

However, after reviews by DEI authorities and the Ministry of Finance, the target goal was raised, and the estimate now is that a record of more than 75 billion Lempiras will be achieved.

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