2% tax on delivery apps: “let the delivery guys pay it”

If the couriers who make use of technological applications such as Uber Eats and Rappi are not employees of these companies and, second, if the applications are only a communication service between person A who needs a service and person B who can offer it, So, who takes advantage of Mexico City’s infrastructure to generate income? The deliverers. So, who should pay the 2% “tax” on delivery platforms in force from January 1, 2022?

One thing is clear: platforms never lose. Another thing is also clear: the tax collection voracity of Mexico City created another tax monster in the forced regulation of these companies, one disguised as “use” and flavored with fiscal chauvinism. This, instead of promoting labor protection and security reforms for platform deliverers.

There is one more thing: someone has to pay the 2% “tax” to the platforms that offer home delivery services in Mexico City. It will not be the platforms.

The reform to the Tax Code of Mexico City of December 2021 prohibits the “tax” from being transferred either to merchants who use applications (apps) to deliver their products or to consumers who use apps to acquire those products to domicile nor to the labor force represented by the distributors of the platforms, formally “independent workers”.

In other words: the platforms have to bear the cost, says the new article 307 TER of the Tax Code. But transferring a “tax” of 2% to customers —merchants or final consumers, it doesn’t matter— in the form of a price increase is not going to be distinguished by anyone, least of all in an inflationary context that does not yield. It would be to go, for example, from a final price of 100 to 102 pesos, which will allow apps to have the resources to comply with the tax obligation without hurting their income (the “tax” applies to the amount of the service commission , which would make it even more difficult to identify in the final price).

The capital reform disguised this “tax” as “aprovechamiento”, a non-tax income. Its promoters knew that in the midst of creating a corporate global minimum taxled by the OECD and the G20, Mexico is prevented from promoting new taxes against transnational technology companies.

Then the Mexican ingenuity arose: what if instead of creating a new tax we collected as “use”, as if it were a consideration for the use of public domain assets, such as our beautiful streets and avenues? And there we go creatively to Congress, where the legislative cabal of Morena, the party of Governor Claudia Sheinbaum Pardo, dressed with the figure of “use” (non-tax income) what is a very clear tax income.

The joke was perfect, but it only makes the collectors laugh. When the concrete corporate global minimum taxMexico will have to repeal the current taxes on technological platforms, such as the lodging services tax that applies to Airbnb. With the exception of two zombies that will remain standing: the taxes disguised as benefits that Mexico City charges technology platforms. Remember, dear reader, that before article 307 TER there is 307 BIS, created during the government of Miguel Ángel Mancera (2015) to collect 1.5% of each trip made through Uber, Cabify or Beat.

In the end, applications are neither regulated nor is the legislative majority used to promote labor protection and the safety of delivery people, drivers and other service providers. precarious working capital in the so-called platform economy. The result is monstrous, because applying the logic that the delivery men are not employees of the platforms, they are actually the ones who take advantage of the beautiful infrastructure of the capital. The worst of all worlds.

Jose Soto Galindo

Editor of El Economista online


Journalist. Since 2010 he edits the digital version of El Economista in Mexico City. Master in Transparency and Protection of Personal Data from the University of Guadalajara. He has a specialization in telecommunications and information technology law. His personal blog is Economicon.

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