So, you are interested in investing in Ivory Coast. But you still do not know enough about the legal and tax environment?
Let us guide you. First, you should think about the best legal form for the company you want to create (read our article about business creation) or think about having a partner to rely on (let us find one for you)
Regular corporate taxation in Ivory Coast depends both on your turnover (estimated or real) and sometimes on the legal form you’ve chosen. It is applied to you gross profit (20 to 25%) or directly to your tunover (2.5 to 8.5%)
Over the past few years, many reforms were carried out to attract both local and foreign investors. Among them:
A free zone for companies operating in the feld of telecommunications, digital innovation, Research and Development or biotechnology. The free zone is only 30kms from the port of Aidjan and provides tax exemptions with no duration limitation : 0% business tax rate, 0% Taxes on salaries, 0% custom duty.
A special ZERO business tax rate: This reform is obviously one of the most attractive of the whole continent. Locally registered businesses in their first year of existence can require to benefit from this advantage. The special ZERO business tax rate is given for a 7 to 15 years period depending on the ivorian region/city you plan to invest in.
However you have to make sure that your activity qualifies and that you will hire ivorian staff. So far, so good. You will also have to write a coherent business plan (in French) including an explanation of the added value of you project for the country. Last but not least you will be asked to meet with the authority in charge of assesing your request so as to give a detailed explanation of you project and answer a few questions. The special ZERO business tax rate goes together with many over adavantages including up to 50% cut on customs, VAT free water and electricity, Up to 90% cut on employers contributions (salaries, social security etc..)
Last but not least a special tax credit is granted under certain conditions to employers who hire individuals from certain target groups such as women, persons with disabilities, or men above 35. This tax credit can reach up to 1.500.000 CFA (2.300 EUROS) per employee.
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