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Cuba – Taxation

Cuba is a Caribbean island country with a mixed economy that is largely state-controlled. The taxation system in Cuba is relatively complex, with a territorial income tax system that applies to both individuals and companies. In this article, we will examine how the taxation system works in Cuba, double taxation agreements, the main taxes that expats need to be aware of, special tax breaks for expats, how to file a tax return in Cuba as an expat, and tax exit procedures for anyone leaving Cuba to move abroad.

The Taxation System in Cuba

The taxation system in Cuba is based on a territorial income tax system. This means that individuals and companies are taxed on income earned within the country’s borders. The tax system in Cuba is progressive, which means that the tax rate increases as income increases.

Personal Income Tax

Personal income tax in Cuba is based on a progressive tax rate system. The tax rates range from 15% to 50%, depending on the level of income earned. There are also deductions and exemptions available to individuals, which can reduce their taxable income.

Corporate Income Tax

Corporate income tax in Cuba is also based on a progressive tax rate system. The standard tax rate is 35%, but there are also lower rates available for small and medium-sized enterprises.


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Sales Tax

Cuba imposes a sales tax of 10% on most goods and services.

Double Taxation Agreements

Cuba has signed double taxation agreements with several countries, including Spain, China, and Canada. These agreements aim to avoid double taxation of income earned in one country by a resident of another country. The agreements generally provide rules for determining which country has the right to tax the income and the tax rate that should be applied. The agreements also provide mechanisms for resolving disputes between the two countries.

Main Taxes in Cuba

As an expat in Cuba, you will be subject to several taxes. The main taxes that expats need to be aware of include:

Personal Income Tax

As an expat in Cuba, you will be required to pay personal income tax on your income earned within the country’s borders. The tax rates range from 15% to 50%, depending on the level of income earned.

Sales Tax

As an expat in Cuba, you will also be subject to a sales tax of 10% on most goods and services that you purchase.

Special Tax Breaks for Expats

As an expat in Cuba, there are several special tax breaks that you may be eligible for, including:

Foreign Tax Credit

If you are a resident of Cuba and you have paid taxes in another country, you may be eligible for a foreign tax credit. This credit can be used to offset your Cuban tax liability.

Tax Treaty Relief

Cuba has signed tax treaties with several countries that provide relief from double taxation. If you are a resident of one of these countries, you may be eligible for relief from Cuban tax on income earned within the country’s borders.

How and when to file a tax return in Cuba as an expat

As an expat in Cuba, you will be required to file a tax return if you have income earned within the country’s borders. The deadline for filing your tax return is typically March 31st of the following year.

To file your tax return, you will need to gather all your income documents, such as payslips and investment statements. You can file your tax return at a local tax office.

Tax Exit Procedures for Cuba

If you are leaving Cuba to move abroad, you must inform the tax authorities of your departure and settle any outstanding taxes before leaving the country. You will need to file a tax return for the year up until your departure date. The tax return will cover your income up until the day you leave Cuba.

The tax return is used to determine if you owe any taxes before leaving the country. If you have any tax liabilities, you will need to pay them before leaving Cuba. You may also be required to pay a tax on certain property that you own in the country, such as real estate.

In addition to filing a tax return, you should also inform your financial institutions, such as banks and investment companies, of your departure. This will ensure that they are aware of your new residency status and can adjust any taxes or fees accordingly.

The taxation system in Cuba is relatively complex, with a territorial income tax system that applies to both individuals and companies. As an expat in Cuba, you will be subject to several taxes, including personal income tax and a sales tax. However, there are also special tax breaks that you may be eligible for, such as the foreign tax credit and tax treaty relief. It is important to understand your tax obligations in Cuba and to file your tax return on time. If you are leaving Cuba to move abroad, you must inform the tax authorities and file a tax return to ensure that you have met all your tax obligations before leaving the country.


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