Regulation of the duty of cooperation of the Tax Authorities with the Financial Information Unit

On November 23, 2011 the Financial Information Unit (hereafter, the “FIU”) issued the Resolution No. 220/2011 (the “Resolution”) that regulates the duty of cooperation which the Argentine Tax Authorities must comply with (the “Tax Authorities”), imposed by the Law No. 25.246 and its amendment acts (the “Law”). The main purpose is to prevent crimes of money laundering and terrorist financing.

The Law provides in its Section 14 Subs. 1 that the FIU is authorized to request reports, documents, records and any other element useful for the performance of its functions to the subjects listed in Section 20, among which the Tax Authorities are included in the Subsection 15. Under the analysis of a suspicious transaction report, these agencies may not oppose the banking, tax, securities or professional secrecy to the FIU, nor the legal or contractual commitments of confidentiality.

Therefore, the Resolution states in its Section 2 that when the FIU request to the Tax Authorities information protected by tax secrecy, the latter should provide it within a maximum of fifteen (15) administrative working days, under penalty of law.

Consequently, the Annex I (the “Annex”) of the Resolution states that the Tax Authorities will provide all necessary assistance to the FIU for the purpose of carrying out the supervisions, audits and inspections to be made. Also, in its Section 4, the Annex stipulates that within thirty (30) days of the end of each inspection, the Tax Authorities shall send to the FIU the final reports made of such inspections. These reports, which are not binding for the FIU’s president, should contain the background, the tasks performed, the data analysis and the results of the supervisions, audits and inspections. With all these documents the FIU will make a record.

Finally, Section 5 of the Annex provides that in cases in which “prima facie” an infringement of the obligations established by the Law had been spotted, the Tax Authorities will send to the FIU, together with the final reports, all supporting documentation that facilitates the conduct of Administrative Penal Regime under Chapter IV of the Law.

Once the record was started, the FIU will analyze the information and, when appropriate, the documentation provided, and if finding missing information, documentation or any inconsistency, the Tax Authorities may be required to make clarifications. Once such procedure is completed, the FIU will issue on the supervision, control and on the inspection and, when appropriate, decide upon the relevance of the application of administrative penalties.

This Resolution was published in the Official Gazette on December 1, 2011, and came into force on the same day.

We invite you to join our monthly newsletter