Expanding multinationals must understand and comply with their accounting requirements in Bolivia. This is crucial for business success when setting up and operating commercially over the long term. Failure to comply with local accounting and tax obligations could result in financial or other sanctions.
We give an overview on the accounting and tax obligations in Bolivia for business. Of course, it is highly recommended to engage with a local bilingual accounting expert in the country to support your business.
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What are the tax rates in Bolivia?
Your company will primarily be subject to corporate income tax, value added tax (VAT) and social security contributions in Bolivia. Below is a list of aspects to consider when it comes to taxes in Bolivia:
- The value added tax rate is 13%, which is a low percentage compared to other countries in the region. It does not apply to all export products and services.
- The capital gains tax rate is 25%, but it is exempt from the payment of transaction tax in the Bolivian stock market.
- The tax rate for establishing a branch of a company in Bolivia is 12.5%.
The tax year varies depending on the activity of the company:
- Banking, commercial, and service activities have a fiscal year of 31 December
- Industrial, oil and gas companies have a fiscal year ending 31 March;
- Agro-industrial and forestry companies have a fiscal year ending 30 June
- Mining companies’ fiscal year ends 30 September.
Each company must appoint an auditor to submit annual audited financial statements.
Companies must pay an average corporate tax rate of 25%, depending on the size of the turnover.
What are the accounting regulations in Bolivia?
Understanding accounting requirements in Bolivia are crucial for your company’s activities and financial records. Below we specify some accounting regulations.
The mandatory accounting books or records in the country are: Libro Diario, Mayor y de Inventario y Balances, and other books that sectorial laws require, must be kept in Spanish and in national currency. National legislation also allows accounting records to be kept by electronic or computerised means.
The accounts shall be kept by legally qualified accountants, to whom the regulatory rules on responsibilities, performance, remuneration and the keeping of the accounts apply.
Invoicing: The National Tax Service (SIN) periodically establishes , the requirement to use online invoicing methods. This is based on technical criteria that include economic activity, number of economic activities, invoice volumen, tax behavior, total invoice amount and e-commerce and related services.
The Commercial Registry (Registro de Comercio) is the entity in charge of monitoring and supervising the commercial activities of companies.
The Tax Authority (SIN) , is the entity responsible for managing and overseeing tax collection, tax registry and implementation of tax policies in Bolivia.
The following activities are prohibited in accounting books:
- Altering the progressive order of dates of operations
- Leaving blank spaces
- Making interlinings or superimposed markings
- Making scratches, erasures or amendments to all or part of the entries
- Removing leaves, altering the order or mutilating the leaves of the books.
Books containing such irregularities have no probative value in favour of the trader who keeps them.
Common Questions when understanding accounting and taxation in Bolivia
Based on our extensive experience these are the common questions and doubts from our clients when looking to understand accounting and taxation in Bolivia.
The corporate tax rate in Bolivia is 25%.
Businesses in Bolivia are subject to various taxes, including corporate income tax, (VAT), Transactional Tax and Municipal Taxes. The tax regime can vary depending on companies’ activities and their location.
In Bolivia, the equivalent to the IRS (Internal Revenue Service) is known as the “Servicio de Impuestos Nacionales” (SIN).
Bolivian accounting standards require companies to prepare their financial statements in Spanish and Bolivia must follow GAAP, IASB, and NIF. Accounting registries and books of account must be recorded in Spanish.
In Bolivia, individuals who are certified accountants and have met specific professional requirements are typically known as “Contadores Públicos.” They play a role similar to that of Certified Public Accountants (CPAs) in other countries.
The IFRS (International Financial Reporting Standards) have not been implemented to date in Bolivia because they have not been officially approved by Bolivian authorities. However, some larger companies or those with international operations may choose to adopt IFRS voluntarily for their financial reporting to align with global standards.
Manage your taxation and accounting compliance in Bolivia with expert support
Understanding taxation and accounting requirements in Bolivia will make it easier for you to budget. Additionally, it will help you understand what you will have to deal with when it’s time to declare your taxes.
If you would like more information about accounting regulations or tax laws in Bolivia, Biz Latin Hub’s group of experts offer you legal and accounting assistance for your business in Bolivia. Take advantage of our large range of multilingual market entry and back-office business solutions to meet your company’s incorporation and compliance needs.
Contact us now for help in establishing a successful business in Bolivia.
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The information provided here within should not be construed as formal guidance or advice. Please consult a professional for your specific situation. Information provided is for informative purposes only and may not capture all pertinent laws, standards, and best practices. The regulatory landscape is continually evolving; information mentioned may be outdated and/or could undergo changes. The interpretations presented are not official. Some sections are based on the interpretations or views of relevant authorities, but we cannot ensure that these perspectives will be supported in all professional settings.