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June 5, 2023

Costa Rican Tax Authority updates the list of cross-border digital services subject to VAT

  • The Costa Rican Tax Authority has included 13 new services in the list of cross-border digital services subject to the value-added tax (VAT) and has excluded one service provider.
  • The current list contains a total of 148 cross-border digital services subject to the 13% of VAT.

On 1 June 2023, the Tax Authority updated the list of digital services that will incur the 13% value added tax (VAT).


According to the article 30 of the VAT Law, entities that issue credit or debit cards, must collect a 13% VAT when their cardholders purchase certain services through internet or any other digital platform.

As established in the VAT Law, its regulations and Tax Authority Resolution No. DGT-R-13-2020, the Tax Authority will periodically issue a list of digital service providers or intermediaries that provide services subject to the withholding tax.

In this regard, when services indicated on the Tax Authority’s list appear in the description of a cardholder’s transactions, the withholding tax must be applied.

Update of the list

This update adds 13 new services, included effective as of 1 June 2023.

Some of the services named on the list are marked by asterisks which indicate that the exact name of these particular services must be referenced in the description of a cardholder’s transaction for the withholding tax to apply.

Further, one company registered as a taxpayer before the Tax Authority and therefore its services are now excluded from the list.

The list of services for which VAT must be charged by credit or debit card issuers is available on the website of the Ministry of Finance (

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

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

Published by NTD’s Tax Technical Knowledge Services group; Carolyn Wright, legal editor