Foreign trade, Taxes



According to DIAN (National Tax and Customs Department), importing, is the action of introducing goods into a customs territory, and software is the intangible element that includes a computer program (computer support), the description of the program (data) and the auxiliary material (instructions).


Thus, import and software may sound incompatible in the same sentence, because import requires a material element, such as the entry of goods, and software is a concept that represents an immaterial element such as a computer support.


Accordingly, the question is ¿When are we looking at a software import?


The answer depends of the software support. If it is physical, then it´s considered as an import, because there is a material element and it is possible to qualify it as a good. But on the other hand, if the software is not contained in a physical means, we could say that the import is non-existent.


When the support is material, the value of customs duties should be fixed taking into account the value of the computer support, which appears in the commercial invoice, but in the absence of this, we could determine a reasonable estimation according to the value of the description of the program (data) and the auxiliary material (instructions).


Applying these criteria we could know when we are in front of a software import and when we are not, at least for customs purposes.




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