LatinNews Daily - 26 October 2022

In brief: Colombia’s gov’t waters down tax reform plans

* Colombia’s President Gustavo Petro has said that high-paying pensions will not be taxed under his government’s planned tax reform, which is due to begin being debated in congress from 7 November. “We’re not going to present a tax on pensions,” Petro said, abandoning previous plans to tax those greater than Col$10m (US$2,010) per month. According to Finance Minister José Antonio Ocampo, this tax would only have affected 1% of pensioners. The decision to abandon the plan came as some of Petro’s more conservative allies in congress are voicing their unease with the tax reform, with legislators from parties such as the Partido Liberal (PL) warning that it could harm Colombia’s economy. Additional concerns around the constitutionality of a pension tax will also have played a role in the government’s decision to abandon it. However, Petro stuck by another of the bill’s more controversial articles, reaffirming his determination to introduce a tax on excess profits from the mining and hydrocarbons sectors. “Goods from the subsoil are the property of the nation and are public property, of the Colombian people… the nation has a right to some royalties,” he said.

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