On Sunday, in the political program, President Sebastián Piñera confirmed that he would not pass on the income he renamed to tax modernization this month.
Surprisingly, TVN's journalist, Matías del Río, asked him whether that implied that the changes to the system, which had already been promised in a campaign for the lateral adjustment realized by the government of Michelle Bachelet, were only "a small hand of the cat" would be. No, the president said.
However, after his announcement tonight, doubts about the depth of the adjustment remain in the air, at least until the details of the presidential message and the tax reform are known.
Shortly before 9:00 am, and after a Monday of celebrations for the macro-economy, Piñera announced the changes in the national chain. The most expected was to know the size of the new collection, the details of taxes on sugar, emissions, which benefits the new tax regime entails for big profits and, on the contrary, how digital taxes would affect the pocket. But that detail did not come, prolonging the uncertainty after one week was particularly hard for government performance according to surveys.
"Today I signed the bill to modernize our tax system, what are the main principles, objectives and content of this modernization of taxes? Create a simpler and unique tax system, more equitable and fully integrated for all Chilean companies, except for a more favorable and special regime for SMEs, which will have lower tax rates, the taxes paid by the companies will be taxed in this way with the taxes that people have to pay, which is good for more than 150 thousand SMEs and large middle class, and make life easier for all our taxpayers, "said the president.
An accelerated or even immediate depreciation system will be added for all companies and that will be more favorable for the La Araucanía region; Promote the development of SMEs through a simpler and more comprehensible tax system, with special incentives for investment and lower tax rates; Strengthen and clarify the rules to better combat evasion and avoidance; Extend the tax exemptions for the adoption of labor and investments in our Extreme Zones until the year 2035; Encourage the acquisition of housing by our middle class, which increases the value of the properties that can benefit from this franchise from 2000 to 4000 UF.
At the same time it will plead with a taxpayer, it will promote the donation of tax-free basic necessities; Modernization and simplification of international tax rules to attract more investment and equalize the tax burden between companies that sell goods and services in a conventional manner and companies that do so in digital form.
Very general? Only that was the content of the announcement that in the past had raised so many expectations in the company, the lines of which have been slightly reduced with the president. His former colleagues have demanded of his government a rapid change of air and an atmosphere of greater cordiality with the elite making the investment decisions. On the other hand, the sensation of the street continues to generate noise for Piñera. Something that does not seem to extinguish the presidential message, because in the announcement, for example, it is not clear how to solve what remains of the economy: employment.
The highest collection was one of the problems that had put the sector in tension. But for the time being they will wait. The announcement, again, only limited that they "modernize and perfect" the green taxes into polluting activities. "And of course, providing tax collection for the state, so that the state can fulfill its important tasks adequately, especially in the area of social policy and infrastructure works," he says without going into details.
The remark of some trade unions is that it will inevitably be necessary to know the details of the project that will be sent to Congress and take the initiative. Although a doubt that was discussed in some chats after the Pinoean tributary proposal was known, the President's message had a double meaning: does it open the possibility of negotiating a certain range of reform with a more open message? The doubts remain until the details of the proposal are known.
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