World Wide Tax News Issue 54 - March 2020

Electronic invoicing implementation

Electronic invoicing implementation

After conducting a pilot scheme for several months, with around 40 companies of various industries and business sectors, the General Directorate of Revenues (DGI) has allowed the use of electronic invoicing. The implementation of electronic invoicing seeks to increase the tax authority’s supervision over the transactions of its taxpayers.

However, only taxpayers that are not subject to the use of DGI authorised electronic invoice printers may use electronic invoicing to bill their transfer transactions, sales of goods and rendering of services.

If the GDI does not specifically determine that a taxpayer or group of taxpayers may or may not implement the use of electronic invoicing, the taxpayer may formally request its use to the DGI.

Once the request has been granted, the taxpayer will be registered under the Electronic Invoice System by the DGI.

Regulations regarding electronic invoice

The Ministry of Economy and Finance has been required to regulate this change through an executive decree (Executive Decree No. 114 of 30 January 2020), complementing other regulations relating to invoicing in Panama. 

Evidential value of the electronic invoice

To guarantee the evidential value of an electronic invoice, the invoice must include a qualified signature from the issuer; therefore, the issuer must have an electronic certificate engaged with an Authorised Qualified Provider[1].

Obligations to be met by the electronic invoice user/issuer

As mentioned before, the user must be exempted from the use of DGI authorised electronic invoice printers, but must also:

  1. Have an electronic certificate issued by a certified services provider registered by the National Directorate of Electronic Signatures of the Panamanian Public Registry. This electronic certificate will be used to sign all electronic documents.

  2. Be duly registered under the Electronic Invoice System of the General Directorate of Revenues.

  3. Issue documents according to the specifications established in the Technical Datasheet[2]
  4. Contract the services of at least one Qualified Authorised Provider to obtain the authorisation to use the electronic documents.
  5. Duly report the subsequent events relating to electronic invoicing.

Electronic biller at DGI´s website

The DGI has made available a free electronic biller for small businesses and individuals that may be used from cellphones, computers and other mobile devices. It also has an updated website about electronic invoicing available at all times at https://dgi.mef.gob.pa/facturaelectronica/index.html.

Rafael Rivera
[email protected]

Lilia Lee
[email protected]

[1] Legal entities with authorisation from the General Directorate of Revenues to provide services to taxpayers that will allow them to use electronic invoicing.

[2] Set of laws, rules, and definitions that are published by the General Directorate of Revenues through resolutions that will describe the format, procedures, and standards related to the use of electronic invoicing.