The following payments are made to the Directorate Direct and Indirect Taxes:
a. Corporate income tax (income tax)
Income tax is raised on taxable profits and gains of companies from their fiscal year. The overall nominal income tax rate applicable is 36%, unless an entity enjoys a tax holiday, agreed with the tax authorities. The corporate income tax is regulated in the Income Tax Act of 1922. The corporate income tax is raised initially based on a self-assessment. In this respect we also refer to Chapter three of this report.
Relief of losses
The individual taxpayer can compensate losses from one source of income with the profits from other sources of income. Both corporations and individuals may carry forward losses for seven years. Losses incurred in the first three years of a business or profession may be carried forward indefinitely.
b. Wage tax, social security premiums
Taxable income includes the taxable employment income. According to the Suriname Wage Tax Act employment income paid by a Suriname withholding agent (employer) to an employee is subject to withholding of wage tax. This must be credited against the income tax payable on the taxpayer’s income tax return or may serve as a final tax. A permanent establishment is considered a withholding agent according to the Wage Tax Act.
Normal rate of taxable wage:
|Portion of annual taxable wage||%|
|up to SRD 11,356.80||8%|
|exceeding SRD 11,356.80 up to SRD 19,273.80||18%|
|exceeding SRD 19,273.80 up to SRD 30,193.80||28%|
|from SRD 30,193.80 and above||38%|
Table 4.2 Normal rate of taxable wage
Note that exceptions on the above rate may apply for lump sum benefits and overtime payments.
Social Security Premium
All resident individuals/employees under age 60 are required to make this contribution. The social security premium amounts to 4% of the net income/wage. Note that the social security premium is not the same as the pension premium/contribution.
Non-residents are not subject to social security contributions. Previous contributions to the social security premium are not returned at the end of the labor contract/departure from Suriname.
c. Dividend withholding tax
In Suriname, the dividend withholding tax is codified in the Dividend Tax Act/1973, which only levies withholding taxes on dividends paid from companies. The dividend tax must be withheld by the company that distributes the dividend. Suriname has a domestic dividend withholding tax rate of 25% which applies also in non-treaty situations – i.e. a domestic (Suriname) company distributing dividend to any other (non-treaty) parent company. Suriname has a tax treaty with the Netherlands which avoids payment of double tax. This tax treaty lowers the withholding rate to 7.5% – there is a limited
General Anti Abuse Rule (GAAR) in the dividend article, which should be managed, otherwise 15%-20% applies (the direct tax benefit is therefore 17.5%-points).
Distributions from a Suriname branch to any head office abroad should not be subject to withholding taxes; a branch does not distribute ‘dividends’ so dividend withholding tax is not an issue.
d. Turnover tax
Suriname does not have a value-added tax (VAT), but a Turnover tax (sales tax).
Under the name of Turnover Tax Act 1997, tax is levied in compliance with the stipulations of this law on:
- Goods produced in Suriname and delivered in Suriname by entrepreneurs within the scope of their enterprise;
- Services, mentioned in appendix no. 1 of this Law, performed in Suriname by entrepreneurs within the scope of their enterprise;
- The import of goods.
The rates of the Turnover tax are:
- 10% for the supply of goods and on imports (25% for some imported luxury goods);
- 8% for the rendering of services which are included in the appendix to the law;
- 0% in the case of export of goods.
e. Custom duties
Suriname levies import duties on the import of goods. The tariffs of the import duties vary in general from 0 to 40%. Usually, the eligibility for import duties means also eligibility for turnover tax.
With the entry of Suriname in the CARICOM in 1995, the regime of import duties was brought in line with the other CARICOM countries, levying one external tariff.
Please note that most goods that are produced in the CARICOM are exempt from import duties.
Incentives on custom duties
Exemptions and special incentives on custom duties are found in different regulations, such as the Petroleum Act and Mineral Agreements, which provide special incentives to oil companies, contractors and subcontractors of oil companies and for RGM and NS.
f. Statistic and consent rights (levies)
With the import some other duties (statistic 0.5% and consent rights 1.5%) of the CIF-value are due.
The State Decree 2005/ SB 2005-39 and the Mineral Agreements provide the Hydrocarbon industry, RGM and NS, exemptions for statistic and consent levies, limited to the equivalent of USD 300.000 per calendar year.