Posted in Argentina Real Estate

Argentina: Restrictions On ownership of Rural Land by Foreigners

Argentina’s Act 26,737, enacted in 2011, restricts foreign ownership of rural real estate. The restrictions imposed by Act 26,737 are relevant for any project that involves acquisition of rural land in Argentina .

The Act imposes several limitations. Under the Act and its applicable amendments, foreign ownership is defined as any acquisition, transfer of ownership or possession rights, whatever the type or name granted by the parties or duration of the same, in favor of a series of points, set forth below. Continue Reading

Posted in Arbitration Brazil Colombia Foreign Arbitral Award ICSID International Arbitration Mexico UNCITRAL

Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards in Key Latin America Jurisdictions

Published in the Global Arbitration Review, the chapter on the Enforcement of Foreign Arbitration Awards in Key Latin America Jurisdictions summarizes the arbitration law and practice of certain jurisdictions that have experienced an important development in the past 20 years in their arbitration landscape; they are also countries with significant economic growth. The countries in question are Brazil, Colombia, Mexico and Peru. This chapter focuses on the legislative efforts and the attitude adopted by the courts in these countries in regards to the recognition and enforcements of foreign arbitral awards. For full text, please click here. Continue Reading

Posted in International Trade Mexico NAFTA Trade USTR

Official Start of NAFTA Renegotiation: The renegotiation will set the tone for the administration’s trade policy

The first round of renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) will take place August 16 – 20 in Washington. The United States Trade Representative (USTR) will host a press conference to begin negotiations and will report out daily to the Industry Trade Advisory Committees (ITAC). The mechanics of the rest of the first round remain fluid – some working groups may table proposed text and engage throughout the week, while others may meet only briefly to establish a scope of work. The second round of talks is tentatively scheduled for September 10 in Mexico City. Continue Reading

Posted in Brazil Incentives Tax VAT

Convention for the Avoidance of Double Taxation between Brazil and Russia || Convenção para Evitar a Dupla Tributação entre Brasil e Rússia

On August 1st, 2017, it was published the Executive Decree no. 9,115/2017, which internalized the Convention for the Avoidance of Double Taxation between Brazil and Russia (“Brazil-Russia Treaty” or “Convention”), signed in Brasilia on November 22nd, 2004. We have focused on the most relevant points, considering most usual queries of taxpayers.

According to article 2 of the Convention, the rules to avoid double taxation shall apply to the Brazilian income  tax of individuals and corporations and the Russian tax on profits of organizations and Russian income tax on individuals. There is no mention regarding Brazilian Social Contribution on Net Profits (CSLL), but it can be interpreted that the aforementioned contribution is covered by the Brazil-Russia Treaty by virtue of section 11 of Law no. 13,202/2015.

(Portuguese language full content below) Continue Reading

Posted in Venezuela

Looming Crisis in Venezuela

Authored by The Cohen Group

  • On July 26, the Department of Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) designated 13 current and former Venezuelan government officials, including: Elias Jaua, former foreign minister; Tibisay Lucena, president of the National Electoral Council; and Simon Zerpa, vice president of finance of state oil producer PDVSA. The sanctions are part of increased pressure by the United States to stop the Venezuelan government from holding elections on July 30 for a “constituent assembly” that would re-write the country’s constitution. We expect the Venezuelan government will move forward with the vote, prompting the United States to escalate with possible sectoral sanctions.

More implications of the current crisis, please read below. Continue Reading

Posted in AML chile Financial Services


Below is an update from Chile on the new provisions concerning fund processing.

La Ley N° 20.950, que autoriza la emisión de tarjetas de pago con provisión de fondos (prepago) por entidades no bancarias, encomendó al Banco Central de Chile, el adelante el “BCCh” el establecimiento de normas aplicables a las empresas que emitan y operen estas tarjetas.

Continue Reading

Posted in AML Argentina Financial Services FX KYC Regulatory

ARGENTINA: Financial Information Unit’s New AML Regulations for Financial Institutions

Guest post by Hernán D. Camarero, Partner in Richards, Cardinal, Tützer, Zabala & Zaefferer, an independent law firm

Argentina’s Financial Information Unit (FIU) – the authority that enforces the law on prevention of money-laundering activities and terrorism financing Nr. 25,246, as amended (the AML Act)[1] – has issued Resolution Nr. 30-E/2017 for financial institutions (FIs) and foreign exchange entities as obliged subjects –FIU’s reporting agents – under the AML Act.[2] Res. 30 replaces and abrogates former FIU Resolution Nr. 121/11. It represents another important move by Argentina in its further integration into the international financial and banking systems. Continue Reading

Posted in ANVISA Brazil Regulatory

ANVISA Simplifies Licensing Procedures for Life Sciences Companies

ANVISA – Brazil’s National Health Surveillance Agency – has taken a significant step in strengthening its regulatory framework.

In promulgating RDC No. 153/2017, it is reducing the amount of regulatory red tape in the licensing of companies subject to health surveillance.

The strategic goal of this ANVISA resolution is to rationalize, simplify and harmonize procedures and requirements related to health surveillance licensing. RDC No. 153/2017 brings an interesting legislative approach to the technical regulation of the subject matter by establishing degrees of risk in business development in the life sciences and health sectors in Brazil. This further strengthens standardized procedures for licensing-related safety. Continue Reading

Posted in Tax uruguay

Uruguay: Preferential Tax Scheme for International Trading Companies

Guest post by Guzmán Ramirez and Jonás Bergstein, from Bergstein Abogados, an independent law firm in Uruguay.

Uruguay is positioning itself as a jurisdiction for multinationals considering an alternative legal platform to conduct operations abroad.

The tradition of stability and democracy which characterizes the country, and Uruguay’s achievement of all relevant OECD standards − Uruguay is a member of the OECD Fiscal Affairs Committee − are the foundation for this development.

Among its business-centric policies is a special tax platform allowing companies to conduct international trading operations outside of Uruguay: specifically, the purchase and sale of merchandise and services abroad, without any physical transit of the goods or services through Uruguay.

In 1997, Uruguay’s Tax Office put into effect a special regime for international trading activities − defined as acquisition of goods from a foreign supplier for resale and delivery to another foreign acquirer, with no transit of such goods through Uruguayan territory (Tax Office Resolution No. 51/1997 dated 19 March 1997)-.

Uruguayan companies which conduct such international trading benefit from the option of assessing corporate income tax (Impuesto a las Rentas de las Actividades Económicas — IRAE) at a reduced tax base of 3 percent of the balance between the acquisition price minus the sale price.

This reduced taxable base is subject to IRAE at the rate of 25 percent, which makes an effective tax rate of 0.75 percent over the above balance.

Such tax base (the 3 percent of the balance between the acquisition price and the sale price) is deemed to be “net income,” which means that the company cannot deduct expenses.

An example may illustrate the structure. If the Uruguayan company acquires any goods from a foreign supplier at US$100, and sells the same to a foreign acquirer at US$1,000, then the taxable amount would be calculated at 3 percent of US$900 − i.e., US$27. Because the corporate income tax rate is 25 percent, the amount payable as corporate income tax would be US$6.75.

This regime is optional. The Uruguayan company may choose to pay corporate income tax under any other reasonable criterion to determine the Uruguayan-sourced income (for companies, Uruguay still adheres to the source principle: only Uruguayan-sourced income is taxed). The criterion to be proposed must be duly grounded and sustained, and it can be eventually challenged by the Tax Office. This is the reason that most taxpayers prefer to opt for the regime established under the aforementioned resolution.

Only companies organized under Uruguayan laws may benefit from this preferential tax scheme. Notably, the Uruguayan corporate system itself allows flexibility: (a) a single shareholder is allowed (whether resident or non-resident); (b) one director is sufficient (whether resident or non-resident); (c) transfer of the stock is effected by means of the physical delivery of the stock certificate; (d) re-domiciliation is admitted (inbound and outbound); (e) shelf companies are available; and (f) shareholders may be represented at meetings by proxy.

Dividends remitted abroad − which in Uruguay are subject to a 7 percent withholding − would be taxed only on 3 percent of the total dividends distributed. This is so because remittance of dividends abroad is only taxed where the dividends are distributed by a company whose income is subject to corporate income tax. Where most of the income remains untaxed, the distribution of dividends would be taxed only on a pro-rated basis: only 3 percent of the dividends distributed would be subject to the 7 percent withholding.