The Government still does not have a date to discuss the tax reform project with the national leadership, an issue that has generated controversies in the face of the proposal of the Association of Industries of the Dominican Republic (AIRD), which is known in the Economic and Social Council ( CES) and as a fiscal pact.
Business representatives and legislators differ on the subject. Meanwhile, José Rijo, Budget Director, guarantees that “anxieties will calm down” in the coming weeks, when there is already a formal proposal for discussion.
The Administrative Minister of the Presidency, José Ignacio Paliza, announced during the third round of the dialogue for reforms that the Government intends to socialize a fiscal project with as many people, groups and citizens as possible. He argued that due to the time factor, President Luis Abinader would do it directly with each sector.
However, yesterday Paliza specified that it will be necessary to wait for the Government, through the corresponding mechanisms, to report on those meetings.
“Let us consistently hope that the Dominican Government, through the corresponding channels, can discuss and initiate those conversations, it has not done so while waiting for the document that, although it has been circulating for a long time, is not an official document,” said Paliza.
The director of the Budget, assured yesterday that the fact that the tax reform proposal comes to a consensus with the parties, with the leaders, “is not that it is totally removed from the discussion of the Economic and Social Council.” “It is to reach a consensus, it is to seek will and make it understood that the problem belongs to the country, the problem belongs to the State.”
He specified that the general budget of the State of 2022 was made without taking into account a fiscal reform and recognized that the fiscal pact is what the National Development Strategy Law orders, which should have been signed on January 1, 2015.
In a statement, AIRD demanded compliance with the National Development Strategy Law to address a fiscal pact and not a reform as the government is handling it.
The union considered that it is not the “opportune moment” for the country to embark on a “hasty reform” because the country’s economy has been shaken by the COVID-19 pandemic, and it is just in a process of Recovery.
This approach found the support of the National Association of Companies and Industries of Herrera (ANEIH), whose president Noel Ureña Ceballos reproached the attitude of the Government when trying to promote a reform, ignoring the bosom of the CES.
“We call on the reasonableness of the Government to return to the original plan, a Fiscal Pact, in which all sectors, private, public, civil society and political parties participate if they want to participate. But the priority is to review both the government’s income and expenditures, ”he said.
However, Iván García, president of the Dominican Federation of Merchants, cataloged the decision to leave the discussion of the tax reform out of the CES as “very successful.”
“The intention of the president is to make this reform comprehensive and on time, so we support that it be known directly with each of the sectors,” argued García.
The spokesman for the block of deputies of the Social Christian Reform Party (PR-SC), Ramón Alfonso Genao Lanza, admits that perhaps before the end of this year a fiscal pact will not be reached, as established in the National Development Strategy; “Yes, a fiscal reform can be implemented so that the country does not have to incur so much in international loans and can meet the needs that exist to obtain more resources.”
Senator Franklin Romero considered that it is necessary to analyze with the institutions of the Executive Power, such as the ministries of Finance and Economy, Planning and Development, to evaluate whether a fiscal reform must be approved before the draft National Budget Law of 2022.
While Senator Felix Bautista, declared that if you want to approve a fiscal pact, as provided by the National Development Strategy Law, the conditions must be created for that to be achieved.
More voices from the business community
On the subject, the president of the National Council of Private Enterprise (Conep), Pedro Brache, has indicated that they are waiting for the proposal to be presented to them by the President of the Republic, Luis Abinader, but that the National Development Strategy contemplates a fiscal pact.