Deputy proposes to increase tax on companies that profit more than R$ 10 billion

Deputy proposes to increase tax on companies that profit more than R$ 10 billion

Deputy Hugo Leal (PSD-RJ), general rapporteur for the 2022 Budget, presented last Tuesday (5th) a bill that increases the CSLL (Social Contribution on Net Income) rate of companies that earn more than R$ 10 billion per year. In the justification, he explicitly cites the case of Petrobras.

The state-owned company is a frequent target of criticism by the mayor, Arthur Lira (PP-AL). In an article published in Sheet on June 19, the deputy wrote that Petrobras “cannot be state-owned when it suits it and private and wild when it comes to its astronomical profits.”

“Petrobras is a spoiled child, historically always treated with excessive complacency. Does it have the right to profit astronomically? So society has a duty to tax its profits more, treat it with detachment”, he continued.

Leal’s proposal goes in this direction, by amending the article of the law on CSLL. Today, the rate is 9%. The text provides for a progressive calculation for companies that have a net profit of more than R$ 10 billion in the immediately preceding calendar year.

The text provides that the rate will rise to 15% in the case of companies that profit from R$ 10 billion to R$ 29.9 billion. For those with net income above R$ 30 billion, the rate will be 20%. The changes, if approved by Congress and signed into law, would take effect on January 1, 2023.

In the Chamber, the project is not included in the deliberative session scheduled for next Tuesday (12), in which the PEC that expands social benefits and the one that creates the national floor for nurses will be appreciated. The legislative session runs until July 17 – if the Budget Guidelines Law project is voted on –, and parliamentarians only return on August 1.

In the justification, Leal says that the purpose of the proposal is “to adapt the taxation of legal entities to the constitutional parameters”.

He states that the taxation of companies by the CSLL “continues to be extremely unfair and unrelated to the noble objective for which this contribution was instituted, that is, to finance social security”.

“Currently — to cite just two examples — banks and insurance companies are required to contribute to social security at rates that, in some cases, are more than double those required for other legal entities”, he continues.

According to the deputy, the text seeks to properly tax economic agents so that companies that make a profit above a certain level contribute more to social security.

“What cannot be conceived is that taxation on profit is differentiated, only and only, because it is a specific activity”, he says, in the justification. “The relevant factor should be obtaining profit. The higher the profit, the higher the taxation, regardless of the economic sector.”

In the text, Leal cites Petrobras as an example and states that the state-owned company’s profit in 2021 totaled 107.26 billion, “greater than the combined profit of five of the largest financial institutions in the country in the same period (Banco do Brasil, Caixa Econômica Federal , Banco Bradesco, Banco Itaú and Banco Santander), which corresponded to R$107.75 billion.”

He also recalls that the oil company earned R$ 44.5 billion in the first quarter of this year.

In June, former Petrobras president José Mauro Coelho resigned from the command of the state-owned company, amid intensified pressure from the government of Jair Bolsonaro (PL) on the executive. On May 24, Bolsonaro announced that he would change the command of the state-owned company and appointed the then secretary of Debureaucratization at the Ministry of Economy, Caio Mário Paes de Andrade, to replace the then president of the company. Lira was one of the main critics of Coelho’s management at the state-owned company.

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