Latin Tax Hells
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15th July 2014

A look at the best and worst of Latin America’s tax environments. 
Sorry Penta-champions. Taxes are yet another area in which things are not going in the right direction for Brazil. This South American country ranks at the bottom of our Latin Tax Index for yet another year – a situation which has not improved in the five years since the ranking was released. At the same time, Chile’s predominance at number has also gone unquestioned. It’s the Latin Tax heaven.
Part of the reason for Brazil´s problematic situation was explained by Roberto Palmaka, CFO of Microsoft Brazil in a recent presentation at a Latin Trade CFO event in São Paulo. Since the 1988 Constitution, there have been 400,000 new tax norms in Brazil.
That is 1.2 changes per hour, he said. Companies have to prepare more than 30 reports monthly, and spend more than 50% of their time on Tax/Statutory compliance activities.Rogéirio Menezes, Finance Director at Akzo Nobel in Brazil, completes the picture.
Brazil has 76 different taxes, 170 official fiscal obligations, 100 fiscal document types and three government levels. “An average company spends 1.5% of its revenues dealing with tax requirements,” he said. He claims that the Brazilian tax system is the most complex in the world, and advocates for tax simplification.
The ranking assesses the overall tax climate in a country by looking at four factors: corporate tax rates, tax rates as a percent of profits and the number of payments and hours spent to pay …

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