The Economy Ministry is advancing with a new "monotributo tech" tax scheme for hi-tech freelancers that would offer a differential and preferential exchange rate for their earnings overseas.
Many of those who work in the knowledge economy and IT sectors do all they can to keep their salaries out of reach of Argentina’s tax authorities, often bringing foreign currency into the country for exchange on the black market, where they can multiply their earnings on the black market.
Now the government wants to tackle that problem by offering a new scheme to persuade tech professionals to “clean” their money officially.
The measure slots into the concept of "the dollar-manufacturing machinery" driven by the Economy Ministry’s new head Sergio Massa. Energy, agriculture and the knowledge economy are the key sectors spearheading his objective of obtaining hard currency.
The pporfolio is advancing with tax relief measures aimed at offering the knowledge economy incentives in the form of a differential and beneficial exchange rate, according to reports.
In this direction an emergency decree is set to be published in the next few days giving life to the so-called "monotributo tech" tax scheme for the self-employed in the sector, whereby its professionals (such as designers, gamers and programmers, among others) may sell their services abroad with a specific dollar for their activity.
Now that implementation of a special tax scheme is expected, the objective is for those professionals to cash in the dollars obtained for their work in official money markets.
Hi-tech freelancers currently cash in their export dollars on alternative exchange markets because the official exchange rate only gives them 143 pesos per dollar whereas the various parallel options hover around 300 pesos.
Knowledge Economy Secretary Ariel Sujarchuk has highlighted in recent days that "it’s a measure which will need to be applied with intelligence and we’re analysing it hard."
The aim is to facilitate conditions for a sector whose work is in very high demand abroad but runs into regulatory bottlenecks which make business difficult. The "monotributo tech" rate will be for those invoicing companies abroad and not those working for local firms.
The scheme falls in line with a measure adopted two months ago by the Central Bank permitting these workers up to US$12,000 in bank accounts without it having to be cashed in at the official exchange rate.
Along these lines the Ministry also aims to relaunch the "Argentina Programa" plan in order to have at least 70,000 new programmers in the next year. Also under ministerial analysis is a tax credit bonus equivalent to 70 percent of the employer contributions paid by companies registered in the Registro de la Economía del Conocimiento.
The economic team is aiming at three specific sectors to net dollars: agriculture (a new “soy dollar” is expected soon), energy and the knowledge economy.