Starting A Business In Buenos Aires

Redpossum

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I'm going to repeat something I was told by a porteño, but I don't understand how it could be true.

My taxi driver on Thursday took me past the Peruvian embassy and said that large numbers of Chinese are coming into the country through the Peruvian embassy somehow, and that they're getting their Argentine citizenship in 30 to 60 days. It sounds crazy, but given some of the other things I've been told...
 

Davidglen77

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I started a business in Buenos Aires about 6 years ago, I was able to get residency through a SRL (equivalent of an LLC) I set up here, with an Argentine business partner and made myself an employee, with an employment contract. I renewed my temporary residency each year and on the 3rd renewal I could make it permanent. In retrospect, it wasn't that difficult or expensive to do at that time, maybe about $10,000 pesos for the setup and then $600 pesos per month (for 3 years, for payroll taxes to keep myself on the "books" as an employee). Since this money went partially towards paying for my obra social health insurance and future retirement from ANSES (jajjaajaj) it was a wash.
If you are planning to start a retail business here I STRONGLY recommend you have your head examined, unless you like major self-inflicted punishment. Yes, you can make money at it, my business actually made a profit, however between, the corruption, incessant inspections, inefficiency of goverment agencies, bribes expected, robberies, stealing and employee issues, it wasn't worth it. I clearly remember the day I closed my store for the last time as being one of the happiest days of my life. Here's my story: www.escrachados.com
Other businesses such as creative agencies, software related ventures and tourism can be fun and have less headaches to deal with. Good luck.
 

Big Al

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Easiest and best thing to do is just come here and over stay.
 

steveinbsas

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I started a business in Buenos Aires about 6 years ago, I was able to get residency through a SRL (equivalent of an LLC) I set up here, with an Argentine business partner and made myself an employee, with an employment contract. I renewed my temporary residency each year and on the 3rd renewal I could make it permanent. In retrospect, it wasn't that difficult or expensive to do at that time, maybe about $10,000 pesos for the setup and then $600 pesos per month (for 3 years, for payroll taxes to keep myself on the "books" as an employee). Since this money went partially towards paying for my obra social health insurance and future retirement from ANSES (jajjaajaj) it was a wash.

Thanks, David, this is very interesting and leads to additional questions:

What do SRL and LLC stand for?

Was the business registered with migraciones and would it have been possible to employ additional foreigners?

Were you granted a work visa as an employee or was it another category?

Do you have any idea if it would be possible to do this today?
 

Davidglen77

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Thanks, David, this is very interesting and leads to additional questions:

What do SRL and LLC stand for?

Was the business registered with migraciones and would it have been possible to employ additional foreigners?

Were you granted a work visa as an employee or was it another category?

Do you have any idea if it would be possible to do this today?

SRL - Sociedad de Responsabilidad Limitada (in the US it's LLC - Limited Liability Corporation)

Yes, the business has to be registered with Migraciones, because I was employing foreigners - myself being one of them, and I imagine you can employ other ones as well.

I had an employment contract with my own company, as manager - since it was a functioning and legitimate business, there was no issue, all taxes paid, books kept by an accountant, everything registered with AFIP.

I imagine this would still work today, as it's a totally legitimate way of doing things. Best thing to do is speak with an accountant and or lawyer who knows about corporate law and immigration law.
 

steveinbsas

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I had an employment contract with my own company, as manager - since it was a functioning and legitimate business, there was no issue, all taxes paid, books kept by an accountant, everything registered with AFIP.

So you had a "work" visa (as well as a financial interest in the company)?
 

khairyexpat

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SRL - Sociedad de Responsabilidad Limitada (in the US it's LLC - Limited Liability Corporation)

Yes, the business has to be registered with Migraciones, because I was employing foreigners - myself being one of them, and I imagine you can employ other ones as well.

I had an employment contract with my own company, as manager - since it was a functioning and legitimate business, there was no issue, all taxes paid, books kept by an accountant, everything registered with AFIP.

I imagine this would still work today, as it's a totally legitimate way of doing things. Best thing to do is speak with an accountant and or lawyer who knows about corporate law and immigration law.

That is creative.

So (with Argei partner) you made a legally registered Business Investment to get a Work Visa for your self as a Manager of the Business.
You did not apply for or get a Business Investor Visa.

So many ways to skin a cat. ... !!!
 

Davidglen77

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So you had a "work" visa (as well as a financial interest in the company)?

There is really no such thing as a "work visa" in Argentina. I had an employment contract, that allowed me to apply for temporary residency and work legally here. I happened to be a partner in that business as well. About a year after doing this, we made me the principal of the business (majority shareholder). To do this keep in mind there are tax implications that you have to be aware of. You have to register as "responsable inscripto", IVA, ganancias, autónomo, etc. Which implies the need to pay an accountant each month, plus your payroll taxes, etc. These are not things you can do yourself. It worked for me because I actually had a business that produced income each month, employees en blanco, etc.
 

Davidglen77

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That is creative.

So (with Argei partner) you made a legally registered Business Investment to get a Work Visa for your self as a Manager of the Business.
You did not apply for or get a Business Investor Visa.

So many ways to skin a cat. ... !!!

Yes, that is correct. It worked just fine, but again, I had a real business, employees, paid taxes, etc. If you plan to do that it would work fine, but there is a financial outlay that you have to be prepared to pay each month, and if you don't have a functioning business, that will come out of your own pocket, which of course may work just fine if you have the funds.
 

steveinbsas

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There is really no such thing as a "work visa" in Argentina. I had an employment contract, that allowed me to apply for temporary residency and work legally here. I happened to be a partner in that business as well. About a year after doing this, we made me the principal of the business (majority shareholder). To do this keep in mind there are tax implications that you have to be aware of. You have to register as "responsable inscripto", IVA, ganancias, autónomo, etc. Which implies the need to pay an accountant each month, plus your payroll taxes, etc. These are not things you can do yourself. It worked for me because I actually had a business that produced income each month, employees en blanco, etc.

When I, as well as most expats, use the term "work" visa we are referring to the temporary residency that is granted when someone has a work contract with a business that is registered with migraciones to employ foreigners.

Just to clarify for anyone who is considering seeking employment in Argentina, expats with a work contract who are granted temporary residency and do not have a financial interest in the company for whom they work do not have to register as "responsable inscripto", or pay the IVA, ganancias, autónomo, or pay an accountant each month, or pay payroll taxes, etc.

You obviously found a great way to avoid the huge investment required to obtain an investor visa, which, in 2009 I believe was actually much lower in pesos than it is today. If I remember correctly, it was Dr Rubilar who provided the information regarding the increase in the minimum amount. Perhaps he can confirm when the change occurred and if there was actually an increase or decrease in the amount required.
 
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