Ecuador: New measures against Covid-19

covid-19-labor.jpg

Since March 17, new limitations apply to mobility and the development of economic activities.

I. Measures enforced throughout the country

The President of Ecuador, through Executive Decree 1017, declared a state of emergency throughout Ecuador, further declaring the Covid-19 (coronavirus) as a pandemic and issued additional control measures.

  1. Freedom of movement and mobility of people in the country have been limited and in-person work activities on public and private sector were suspended from March 17 to 24.
  2. Exceptionally, the mobility of people will be allowed in the following cases:
    • Workers and employees of entities that provide basic services relating to health, security, fire, airports, terminals (maritime, river), banking, food supply; the export sector and its logistics chain, strategic sector, those related to animal care and breeding, consular services accredited in the country.
    • Members of the National Police and Armed Forces.
    • Medical, health or relief personnel
    • Public and private transportation of entities authorized to operate.
    • People who must commute for emergency reasons.
    • People who need to stock up on food, medicine or fuel.
  3. Curfew has been established prohibiting any circulation of vehicles and people from 9:00p.m. to 5:00 a.m. each day, except for the cases listed in a. to f. of Paragraph 2.
  4. From midnight on Tuesday 17 to April 5, domestic air operations are suspended. Exclusive air cargo operations, domestic and international, are permitted and operational.
  5. Since Wednesday, March 18 vehicle circulation is restricted for people who commute to stock up on food, medicine or fuel. Circulation is limited to:
Day

License plate ending on:

Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday 1 – 3 – 5 – 7 – 9
Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday 0 – 2 – 4 – 6 – 8

II. Measures enforced in the Metropolitan District of Quito

The Mayor of M.D. of Quito announced additional control measures applicable exclusively in M.D. of Quito from 5:00 am of March 17 until March 31:

  1. Suspension of the use of public spaces including sidewalks, streets, parks, pedestrian bridges, passages, among others. Only the mobility of the persons listed in Section I.2 above is allowed with certain additions.
  2. Suspension of business activity licenses. Licenses for food and medicine sales activities are exempted.
  3. Full restriction for private vehicles´ circulation and buses (motorcycles, bicycles, trolleybus, Ecovía, Metrovía systems). Motorcycles that transport food and medicines with a maximum of one passenger are allowed to circulate.
  4. Taxis can circulate to transport authorized persons, with limitation established by the Mayor.
  5. Closure of land terminals and airports, except for cargo operations.
  6. Circulation of children, senior citizens or people with disabilities is not allowed.

III. Public sector operation and the judicial function

  1. The suspension of in-person work activities includes the public sector, which will limit its activity to what can be carried out by teleworking. This means that the majority of processes are suspended.
  2. Several public entities such as the Internal Revenue Service, the National Customs Service of Ecuador, the Superintendence of Companies, the Superintendence of Control of Market Power, Ministry of Labor have expressly suspended the terms within pending administrative proceedings.
  3. The Judicial Branch suspended activities while the state of emergency established by the President of the Republic lasts. Likewise, judicial processes dates and terms are suspended.

 

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New deadlines for filing tax returns

tax-returns-new-deadlines

Regulation NAC-DGERCGC20-00000012 issued by the Internal Revenue Service and published on March 9, 2020 in the Official Registry 157 established new deadlines for filing the following tax returns and annexes:

    1. Value added tax (VAT) taxpayers and VAT and income tax withholding agents, whose ninth digit of the tax ID (RUC) is 4, for this occasion, may file the February monthly tax return, until March 17, 2020.
    2. Individuals and undivided successions that are required to file the income tax return for the fiscal year 2019, for this occasion, may file their tax return until the following dates:
Ninth digit of the tax ID (RUC) 

Maximum date of filing the return

1 Marzo 11 th
2 Marzo 13 th
3 y 4 Marzo 19 th
5 y 6 Marzo 25 th
7 y 8 Marzo 27 th
9 y 0 Marzo 31 st
  1. Taxpayers required to file the Simplified Transactional Annex, may file the annexes from January to September 2020, for this occasion, according to the following dates:
Periodo de 2020 

Meses de presentación

January and February September 2020
March and April October 2020
May, June and July November 2020
August and September December 2020

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Withholding percentage – dividends

withholding-percentage-dividends-tax

Regulation NAC-DGERCGC20-00000011 issued by the Internal Revenue Service establishes the withholding percentages applicable to the dividends distributed by entities with tax residence or permanent establishments located in Ecuador to: (i) individuals with tax residence in Ecuador; or, (ii) foreign entities which beneficial owners are individuals with tax residence in Ecuador.

The withholding percentage will apply over 40% of the amount of the dividend, according to the following:

Taxable income from
(basic tax bracket) 

Taxable income until
(surplus tax bracket)

Withholding over the
basic tax bracket

Withholding percentage over
the surplus tax bracket

20.000,00 0 0%
20.000,01 40.000,00 0 5%
40.000,01 60.000,00 1.000,00 10%
60.000,01 80.000,00 3.000,00 15%
80.000,01 100.000,00 6.000,00 20%
100.000,01 Forward 10.000,00 25%

The withholding receipt must be issued with the name of the individual with tax residence in Ecuador even if the amount to withhold is zero.

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Tax Regime for Microenterprises

tax-regime-microenterprises-lawyers

Regulation NAC-DGERCGC20-00000011 issued by the Internal Revenue Service and published on February 21, 2020 in the Supplement to the Official Registry 148, establishes the rules for applying the Tax Regime for Microenterprises created by the Law of Simplification and Tax Progressivity.

Microenterprises are those individuals or entities whose annual income is equal to or less than US $ 300,000.00 and, that have 1 to 9 workers.

The Internal Revenue Service is able to include or exclude from the especial regime, taxpayers who meet the conditions to qualify as microenterprises. For this purpose, the Tax Authority is able to update the taxpayer tax ID without prior notice and, it must publish a microenterprises registry on its web page (https://www.sri.gob.ec/web/guest/catastros).

Taxpayers who consider that they should not have been included in the microenterprises tax regimen may request their exclusion until April 7, 2020.

Taxpayers included in the Tax Regime for Microenterprises must comply with the following:

  1. Issue invoices in accordance with current regulations.
  2. Request proof of sale to support the acquisition of goods or provision of services.
  3. Keep accounting books or a record of income and expenses as appropriate.
  4. File tax returns when appropriate. In the case of VAT and excise tax (ICE), the tax returns must be filed semiannually in the months of July and January of each year.
  5. Submit the annexes of information when appropriate, and
  6. Fulfill the other formal duties indicated in the Tax Code.

Taxpayers registered in the microenterprise’s registry must apply the regime from February 2020. Therefore, they will not act as withholding agents for income tax or value added tax since said month.

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Temporary Tax

temporary-tax

Regulation NAC-DGERCGC 20-00000004 issued by the Internal Revenue Service and published on January 29, 2020 in the Supplement of the Official Registry 131 establishes the procedure for filing the tax return and paying the temporary tax.

The Regulation establishes that the temporary tax that must be paid on an annual basis on the fiscal years 2020, 2021 and 2022.

The taxable base is equal to the income obtained on the fiscal year 2018 -as registered in the income tax return or as established by the Tax Administration within an assessment procedure- less the exempt income and income not subject to income tax. To this amount the taxpayer should add or deduct, as appropriate, the adjustments for deferred taxes registered in the same fiscal year.

The following rates must be applied to the taxable base:

Taxable income from 

Taxable income until

Tax rate
US$1.000.000,00 US$5.000.000,00 0,10%
US$5.000.001,00 US$10.000.000,00 0,15%
US$10.000.001,00 Forward 0,20%

The value of annual each contribution cannot exceed 25% of the income tax generated in the fiscal year 2018.

Those taxpayers who did not generate income tax in the fiscal year 2018 are not required to file and pay the temporary tax return. The advanced income tax shall not be considered if the amount was higher than the income tax generated.

If the amount of the taxable income or the amount of the income tax declared in the income tax return filed for the fiscal year 2018 changes, a substitute tax return must be submitted.

If the entity is liquidated before the date on which the temporary tax return must be filed, the tax must be paid in advance with respect to the fiscal year in which the liquidation takes place. Entities liquidated until December 31, 2019 are not required to pay the temporary tax.

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