Sign up for tax alert emails    GTNU homepage    Tax newsroom    Email document    Print document    Download document

January 13, 2020

Argentina implements new tax on purchase of foreign currency

Argentina’s tax authorities published General Resolution 4659/2020, which contains regulations to implement Argentina’s new tax on certain transactions involving the acquisition of foreign currency. The General Resolution provides rules on collection agents, timing and procedures to remit the tax payments. The General Resolution was published in the Official Gazette on 7 January 2020.


Law 27,541 enacted the new “tax for an inclusive and supportive Argentina” (known in Spanish as “Impuesto PAIS”), which was implemented through Decree 99/2019 (see EY Global Tax Alerts, Argentine tax reform bill sent to Congress, dated 19 December 2019 and Argentina makes sweeping changes to tax laws, followed by regulations implementing recently enacted tax reform, dated 8 January 2020). The tax will be in effect for five years and will apply to the following transactions performed from 23 December 2019 and thereafter:

  • Purchases of foreign currency (i.e., “constitution of foreign assets”) without a specific purpose by Argentine residents, under the limitations imposed by the Central Bank
  • Purchases of goods or services from abroad or purchases by Argentine residents abroad through credit, debit or purchase, including cash withdrawals made outside Argentina
  • Purchases made online through portals or virtual websites in foreign currency
  • Purchases of services rendered abroad through Argentine travel agencies, including if they are paid in cash and access to the foreign exchange market to buy foreign currency is needed to pay the foreign service provider
  • Purchases of ground, air and water passenger services with destinations outside Argentina (except ground passenger services to neighboring countries), including if they are paid in cash and access to the foreign exchange market to buy foreign currency is needed to pay the foreign service provider.

Both Argentine individuals and entities are subject to the tax. The tax rate is 30% and applies to taxable purchases, except for the purchase of digital services, which will be subject to an 8% rate. Argentine financial institutions, credit card issuers, travel agencies and transport companies must act as collection agents of the tax.

General Resolution 4659

The General Resolution clarifies that the tax will apply to the extent the transactions are paid in local currency. In addition, transfers abroad made for specific purposes in accordance with the rules established by the Argentine Central Bank are not covered by this collection regime.

Taxpayers will have to indicate the tax separately in the documents that support each of the taxable transactions, such as foreign-exchange conversion documents, credit and debit card summaries, and invoices for travel services.

If an intermediary is involved in the transaction, the tax will be collected when the intermediary uses the funds to pay for the goods or services acquired by the buyers. When applying the payments to the purchase of goods and services, the payments must first be allocated to the tax, regardless of the arrangements between the parties.

The calculation of the tax is based on the amount of the transactions expressed in Argentine Pesos (ARS). If payments are made through debit cards, any amounts in foreign currency will be converted to ARS, considering the exchange rate as of the date before the debit in the bank account. If payments are made through credit cards or other similar means, any amounts in foreign currency will be converted to ARS considering the exchange rate as of the date before the issuance of the credit card summary or similar document.

On a weekly basis, the collection agents will remit the tax to the tax authorities. On a monthly basis, the collection agents will file an information return with the transaction and tax details. Any additional tax liability reported on the monthly return will have to be paid at the time the return is filed.

If the tax was incorrectly collected, the affected party will request a refund from the collection agent by following the procedures that the tax authorities will implement.

If the tax was not collected, totally or partially, by an intermediary, the Argentine individuals and entities subject to the tax will have to remit it directly to the tax authorities (on or before the 25th day of the month following the one in which the collection was omitted). If the taxable transactions took place between the entry into force of Law 27,541 (23 December 2019) and 7 January 2020, the tax will be considered timely paid if paid on or before 20 January 2020.

Companies doing business and individuals resident in Argentina should review the new regulations and evaluate the implications of this new tax on their operations.

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

Pistrelli, Henry Martin & Asociados S.R.L., Buenos Aires
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



The information contained herein is general in nature and is not intended, and should not be construed, as legal, accounting or tax advice or opinion provided by Ernst & Young LLP to the reader. The reader also is cautioned that this material may not be applicable to, or suitable for, the reader's specific circumstances or needs, and may require consideration of non-tax and other tax factors if any action is to be contemplated. The reader should contact his or her Ernst & Young LLP or other tax professional prior to taking any action based upon this information. Ernst & Young LLP assumes no obligation to inform the reader of any changes in tax laws or other factors that could affect the information contained herein.


Copyright © 2024, Ernst & Young LLP.


All rights reserved. No part of this document may be reproduced, retransmitted or otherwise redistributed in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including by photocopying, facsimile transmission, recording, rekeying, or using any information storage and retrieval system, without written permission from Ernst & Young LLP.


Any U.S. tax advice contained herein was not intended or written to be used, and cannot be used, by the recipient for the purpose of avoiding penalties that may be imposed under the Internal Revenue Code or applicable state or local tax law provisions.


"EY" refers to the global organisation, and may refer to one or more, of the member firms of Ernst & Young Global Limited, each of which is a separate legal entity. Ernst & Young Global Limited, a UK company limited by guarantee, does not provide services to clients.


Privacy  |  Cookies  |  BCR  |  Legal  |  Global Code of Conduct Opt out of all email from EY Global Limited.


Cookie Settings

This site uses cookies to provide you with a personalized browsing experience and allows us to understand more about you. More information on the cookies we use can be found here. By clicking 'Yes, I accept' you agree and consent to our use of cookies. More information on what these cookies are and how we use them, including how you can manage them, is outlined in our Privacy Notice. Please note that your decision to decline the use of cookies is limited to this site only, and not in relation to other EY sites or Please refer to the privacy notice/policy on these sites for more information.

Yes, I accept         Find out more