Colombia’s Congress, followed by the Senate, on Wednesday approved a new tax measure, expected to launch in 2011 and last for four years.
The new tax will impose a rate of 0.6% for those whose income is between COP3 billion and COP5 billion, and 1.2% for those whose income exceeds COP5 billion, reported newspaper El Espectador.
Its is estimated that in Colombia there are about 3,000 tax payers whose income ranges between COP3 billion and COP5 billion, and some 6,000 contributors who surpass COP5 billion. The government hopes to accrue around COP3.3 billion annually from this tax.
According to government figures, this tax will apply to about 9,300 taxpayers, including both individual persons and legal entities, in the wealthiest sector of Colombian society. It will not affect the middle class and poorer sectors of the population.
The finance minister, Oscar Ivan Zuluaga, asserted that these resources will enter the nation’s general reserve and will serve to defend public investment as well as enable the government to address the Constitutional Court rulings on displaced people and health care, the maintenance of social investment as well as investment in infrastructure and the Democratic Security Policy.
“With these resources the government will be able to continue securing the honour, life and welfare of citizens,” Zuluaga explained.
With regard to security, the minister said that Congress had requested urban security be given priority in the distribution of resources: increasing police manpower, bringing in more vehicles, expanding intelligence services and developing technology to strengthen the fight against crime.