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February 20, 2023

Costa Rica's President signs law that eliminates 10% tax on imported beer

  • The law eliminates the 10% tax levied on imported beer and allows the country to comply with the provisions of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT).

On 15 February 2023, the President of Costa Rica signed the law that modifies articles 36, 37 and 39 of the Liquor Sales Law (Law No. 10 of 9 October 1936). The bill eliminates the 10% tax that was calculated on the basis of the total import cost of imported beer. However, this tax does not apply to local beer.

This law will allow Costa Rica to comply with the provisions of the GATT of the World Trade Organization, to which the country has been a party since 1990, specifically with the principle of national treatment, which requires that imports be treated no less favorably than the same or similar domestically-produced goods.

This law will enter into force as of the date of its publication in the Official Gazette.


For additional information with respect to this Alert, please contact the following:

Ernst & Young, S.A., San José, Costa Rica

Ernst & Young LLP (United States), Latin American Business Center, New York

Ernst & Young LLP (United Kingdom), Latin American Business Center, London

Ernst & Young Tax Co., Latin American Business Center, Japan & Asia Pacific