TAX REGIME OF AQUACULTURE IN PERU

In accordance with the tax provisions, we specify below what concerns the tax regime of aquaculture in Peru.

Background

When addressing the issue of aquaculture, we understand as such the cultivation of aquatic plant and animal species. It implies a set of technical activities and knowledge of raising or cultivating aquatic species, both plant and animal.

When referring to farming, we note that it not only involves intervention in the farming process to increase production, but also involves individual or corporate ownership of the stock being farmed and involves planning, developing, and using aquaculture systems, locations, facilities, and practices, as well as production and transportation.

Species that are usually cultivated range from microorganisms to more complex beings, such as micro and macro algae, crustaceans, molluscs and fish. In Peru, the main aquaculture species are trout, scallops and prawns, although other species such as tilapia, paiche, paco and gamitana are also farmed. In this context, aquaculture plays an important role, since it is developed not only by large companies that generate permanent jobs, but also by small companies, peasant and native communities, becoming not only their main economic activity, but, above all, their livelihood and food.

However, with the purpose of obtaining a stable industry, promoting diversification and massification in aquaculture production, encouraging investment in the sector in order to face climate change and environmental conditions, regulations have been established that allow the development and promotion of aquaculture. Some of them have to do with the tax aspect of this sector, which we will develop below.

Tax treatment

When entering the regulatory treatment, we must note that there is a general rule, Legislative Decree No. 1195 published on August 30, 2015, which approved the General Aquaculture Law. However, said legal body did not establish a special tax regime applicable to this sector.

It was not until the publication of Legislative Decree No. 1515 on December 30, 2021, that the Seventh Final Complementary Provision was incorporated into Legislative Decree No. 1195 by which the same tax benefits provided for the Agricultural Sector are extended to aquaculture. Such benefits were established in Law No. 31110 published on December 31, 2020, Law on the Agrarian Labor Regime and Incentives for the Agricultural and Irrigation, Agro-export and Agro-industrial Sector. Article 10 of this Law indicated some benefits such as reduced rates of Income Tax, depreciation of 20% per year on the amount of investments in hydraulic infrastructure works and irrigation works, and a special regime for early recovery of VAT.

In accordance with the aforementioned Legislative Decree No. 1515, these benefits would apply as of January 1, 2022. In addition, the Second Final Complementary Provision indicated that it will be the Executive Power, through Supreme Decree, who will dictate the regulatory and complementary norms that are necessary for the best application of said norm. These regulations were approved and published one year later, specifically on December 31, 2022 by Supreme Decree No. 019-2022-PRODUCE Regulation for the Application of Tax Benefits for Aquaculture. However, on the same day, Law No. 31666 was also published, which repealed the aforementioned Legislative Decree No. 1515, thus rendering the recently published regulatory norm null and void for its application.

That is why from the period 2023 we must apply Law No. 31666, Law for the Promotion and Strengthening of Aquaculture, which through its Second Complementary Repeal Provision ordered the repeal of Legislative Decree No. 1515. This new tax regime for Aquaculture is applicable to natural or legal persons who have administrative law and current sanitary authorization to carry out aquaculture activity and who are in the following productive categories:

  • Aquaculture with limited resources (AREL).
  • Micro and Small Business Aquaculture (AMYPE).
  • Medium and Large Company Aquaculture (AMYGE).

Income Tax

a. Regarding the Annual Income Tax, reduced rates have been established according to their net income, remaining as follows:

For natural or legal persons whose net income does not exceed 1,700 UIT

Taxable year Rates
2023 – 2032 15%
2033 onwards  General regime rate

For natural or legal persons whose net income exceeds 1,700 UIT

Taxable year Rates
From 2023 to 2025 15%
From 2026 to 2029 20%
From 2030 to 2032 25%
From 2033 onwards General regime rate

b. Regarding payments on account, the Second Final Complementary Provision establishes that they will be made applying the rate of 0.8% for the rate of 15%; 1% for the rate of 20%; 1.3% for the 25% rate; and, 1.5% for the rate of the General Regime, to the net income obtained for the month.

On the other hand, with respect to depreciation, a benefit applicable until December 31, 2031 has been established at a rate of 20% per year of the amount of investments in aquaculture infrastructure, as well as in equipment associated with cultivation carried out by natural or legal persons that develop aquaculture activities.

General Sales Tax (IGV)

a. Advance VAT Recovery

For the aquaculture activity, the anticipated recovery of the IGV paid with acquisitions of capital goods, inputs, services and construction contracts in the pre-operative stage of the activity, established in Legislative Decree 973, is not applicable, nor is the minimum investment amount applicable, nor the term of duration of the pre-operative stage established in literals a) and b) of numeral 3.2. of article 3 of said standard.

b. Tax refund

Natural or legal persons domiciled in the country that carry out aquaculture activities, whose sale of aquaculture products in the country is exempt from IGV, will be entitled to a tax refund equivalent to the IGV consigned separately in the payment vouchers corresponding to their acquisitions, as well as the payment paid in their imports of capital goods, raw materials, inputs for the production of aquaculture activities. The tax refund will be made through negotiable credit notes or non-negotiable checks, in accordance with what is established in the regulations.

It is also of special importance to indicate that on May 16, 2023, Supreme Decree No. 092-2023-EF was published, approving the Regulation of the tax provisions related to Income Tax and early recovery of the General Sales Tax contained in Law No. 3166. Said rule pronounces on the aspects of Income and VAT described above, pending the regulation regarding tax refund.

In summary, we have observed that there is a tax treatment that was in force from January 1 to December 31, 2022 based on Legislative Decree 1515 (applying the benefits of the agricultural sector) and another in force as of January 1, 2023 based on Law 31666 Law for the Promotion and Strengthening of Aquaculture, which brings tax benefits for the exclusive use of this sector.

Isaac Rojas Bojorquez
Tax Supervisor
Russell Bedford Peru