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December 22, 2014
Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Despegar.com office closed down for alleged tax evasion

The Federal Adminstration of Public Incomes (AFIP) has closed down the offices of online travel agency Despegar.com, due to a complaint presented by the revenue authority for supposed tax evasion.

According to judicial sources, the website is accused of processing their operations in the United States, where their headquarters in located in the state of Delaware, in order to avoid paying income tax in Argentina.

Thanks to an injunction filed with City courts, however, Despegar was able to resume sales within hours of being closed down by the AFIP, overruling a suspension of the company's CUIT number.

Sources with access to the judicial file suggested that despegar.com's financial movements over 2013 valued over 5bn pesos, 10 times higher than the sales declared to the AFIP. In Argentina, the company has not paid income tax in the last five years.

Ricardo Echegaray, the head of AFIP, called on the travel agency to "pay their taxes in Argentina".

"We are seeking equality amongst taxpayers and we want those who earn the most to pay the most," the civil servant signalled.

"The principal [economic] powers are planning what to do with the big multinationals who hide their assets in off-shore havens, we are carrying out concrete actions against those who make harmful financial plans."
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Tags:  Despegar.com  AFIP  tax evasion  





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