Dominican Republic telecommunication operators Orange Dominicana and Claro have requested the government’s repeal of the 10% temporary tax on their services levied since 2004, Dominican Today reported. According to the article, representatives of the two major telcos met with President Danilo Medina on 3 June 2013 in order to call for the gradual dissolution of the tax.
According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, taxation of telecoms services remains a major topic of discussion in the Dominican Republic. In 2009 the Instituto Dominicano de las Telecomunicaciones’s (Indotel’s) chairman Jose Rafael Vargas said: ‘We have to introduce a gradual reduction [in taxes], starting with the selective consumer tax, which is 10%. We hope that when the Dominican Republic’s economy mends, a reduction of 1% per year can begin so that after five years we would have a selective consumer tax of 5%.’ However, the industrial goods and service transfer tax (ITBIS) increased to 18% from 1 January 2013 as part of the government’s fiscal reforms. In the same month Indotel’s current chairman Carlos Amarante Baret voiced opposition to a proposed government bill which would increase telephone bills by DOP20 (USD0.49) per month to help fund the national emergency system 911. Though he welcomed the creation of the 911 system, Mr Baret urged the government to conduct a detailed cost assessment before taking the bill forward.