Uruguay forces businesses to reveal tax payments via QR codes

We recently saw how US restaurant Harney Sushi is teaching its customers about sustainability in the fishing industry through edible QR codes placed onto its meals. In another campaign to offer transparency to consumers, the Uruguay Tres Milliones scheme is now making it mandatory for high street stores and restaurants to place QR code stickers on their premises, detailing information about how they pay tax.

Given recent high profile news stories about the extent to which companies such as Amazon and Apple partake in tax avoidance schemes, consumers may feel more empowered to make a choice if they know whether businesses are paying tax. Since 22 July, the Dirección General Impositiva in the country has made it mandatory for high street businesses to start displaying a QR code sticker that – when scanned – directs smartphone owners to details about its tax status. Developed in collaboration with the Banco de Previsión Social, organizers hope the scheme will help consumers decide to shop at those stores whose tax obligations are being met. Currently, around 2,600 restaurants, nightclubs, bars and tea rooms have until 22 August to comply with the demand, with other types of businesses to follow suit.

According to statistics, Uruguay had to lowest tax evasion rate in South America in 2012, and this project may only serve to bolster those figures. Is this something that could be implemented in your part of the world?

Website: www.bps.gub.uy
Contact: www.bps.gub.uy/41/contactenos.html

Spotted by: Daniel Carranza

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