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Information regarding COVID-19 & reminder upcoming (tax) deadlines

20 March 2020

In the midst of this Corona (COVID-19) pandemic, BDO Dutch Caribbean has taken the necessary measures to keep our people safe and limit any exposures, insofar possible. This means that not all of our colleagues are working from our offices, but they are working from home and are available by email or phone. In an effort to also comply with the social distancing, we have also limited our meetings for now. If you cannot reach one of our colleagues, please feel free to call our office and we will make sure that you are put in direct contact with our people.

In the midst of these difficult times, we want to inform you about some measures that have been introduced and also remind you of the ongoing upcoming deadlines that may be relevant for you or your business. 

Measures Social Security Bank (SVB)

To avoid a possible spread of the Corona virus, SVB took the necessary measures to avoid physical contact as much as possible and made some adjustment to their procedures. Some procedure can now be done online, for example, calling in sick.

See attached the list of measurement taken by the SVB. This document is available in English, Dutch and Papiamentu.

Measures Minister of Economic Affairs

To safeguard that the needed goods, fruits and vegetables are available to prevent COVID-19 and to regulate the profit margins on these products, our Government has issued a Ministerial decree dated March 19, 2020, with number P.B. 2020, Nr. 17.  The ‘basic package’ (in Papiamentu: ‘Makutu basiko’) – for which prices are regulated has also been extended with the following products:

  • latex and silicone gloves;
  • hand disinfectant products;
  • disinfectant wipes and sprays;
  • cleaning alcohol (70% or more);
  • thermometers;
  • vegetables and fruits with the highest doses of vitamin C.

The Government has further announced during the press conference of yesterday and today that other (aid)measures will be announced by next week (Monday), but have not yet provided details of these measures. We will keep monitoring the situation and will inform you accordingly.

Deadline to file request for exemption of the basic illness insurance (BVZ)

Generally, all Curacao residents are insured under the Basic Illness Insurance for medical care. All insured can benefit from medical insurance, but will also be subject to BVZ premiums. The BVZ premiums are due on a maximum annual income of Ang 150,000 and the percentages are 4.3% for the employee and 9.3% for the employer. A special rate is applicable for seniors and some exonerations or discounts are in place for individuals with an annual income lower than ANG 12,000, or an annual income between ANG 12,000 and ANG 18,000.

However, upon written request, the following categories are exempt for the Basic Illness Insurance:

  • employees of St. Elizabeth Hospital and Isla Refinery;
  • private insured individuals by January 31, 2013, provided that such insurance continued without interruption; private insured individuals with an international health insurance (before November 2014), provided that health insurance scheme offers the same package as the BVZ Act;
  • Retirees of companies that have a health insurance scheme for their former employees and their co-insured family members and survivors, provided that health insurance scheme offers the same package as the BVZ Act;
  • all those who need a permit (Admission and Expulsion) under Article 6 of the Ordinance;
  • individuals whom under international treaties are exempted from participation in social insurance;
  • employees who work outside Curacao but have an income within the Kingdom of the Netherlands and have health insurance;
  • minor children born on or after February 1, 2013 from a parent who is privately insured, provided that the children are insured with the parent.

The deadline to file the written request to obtain the exemption for the application of the BVZ is March 31, 2020. The exemption request can be filed with the Social Security Bank by email. If you need assistance with this, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Deadline preliminary profit tax return

Annually, a company has to file 2 profit tax returns to declare its profits, i.e. the preliminary tax return and the final profit tax returns. Please note that the preliminary profit tax return is due within 3 months after the end of the book year. For a company that has e book year that is equal to a calendar year, this means that the deadline to file the provisional profit tax return and make the necessary payment therefore are March 31, 2020. The preliminary profit tax return should be based on the amount declared on the last final profit tax return filed for the company.

Points of attention

  • If the company has 5 or more employees, then all returns should be filed electronically through the online portal of the Tax Authorities.  
  • The profit tax filing  obligation is now as of the year 2020 also applicable for private foundations. Thus, this year the private foundations should file a profit tax return for the year 2019.
  • If the company had an offshore status, there is no need to submit preliminary profit tax return in 2020 over the year 2019 for converted offshore companies. In other words, preliminary tax return should be submitted only from the year 2021 for the first regular tax year 2020.

How can the Corona virus contaminate the 2019 financial statement?

In the midst of this pandemic and (negative) impact on our economy and our businesses, we have analyzed how this can impact the 2019 financial statements.

We refer to our article in Dutch “How can the Corona virus contaminate the 2019 financial statement?” that provides with an interesting read. Click on this link for the article: or visit our website and subscribe to receive the latest BDO News and Insights.