Monday, March 27, 2006

The tax man cometh 

Last week I posted on the great success the Chavez administration has had with its tax collection efforts. The tax agency, SENIAT, shutting down this or that business for tax violations is daily fare in Venezuelan newspapers. But this little blurb made it into and engish language periodical, BusinessWeek, so I thought I'd reproduce it:

Venezuela notifies 79 workers of tax debt

MAR. 27 6:01 P.M. ET Venezuela's tax agency has notified 79 Coca-Cola employees of tax debts stemming from omitted earnings or inflated deductions on income tax filings from 2003 and 2004.

The tax agency announced in a statement on Monday that it has asked the Coca-Cola Co. workers to pay theirs debts, plus a one percent fine and interest on the taxes that have gone unpaid.

"The intention of this action is to give the workers an opportunity to correct the situation," said the statement.

Venezuelan tax officials are pursuing a "zero evasion" campaign to curb tax evasion and boost revenue. The agency has temporarily closed the offices of large multinational firms accused of bookkeeping irregularities.
President Hugo Chavez says his government is strictly enforcing tax collection regulations to put tax revenue toward infrastructure projects and far-reaching social programs for the poor.

When it comes to taxes in Venezuela you can run, but you can't hide. Not even under pallettes of Coca-Cola.


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