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Accounting and accounting rules in Panama

Accounting Rules

Tax Year
The fiscal year begins on January 1st and ends December 31st of the same year. Although, a special 12-month fiscal year may be requested in certain cases, from the General Director of Internal Revenue.
Accounting Standards
Panama converted to IFRS as from 2009 and has historically utilized accounting principles that complied with the IFRS Standards. The National Accounting Management created an integrated system of financial administration (in Spanish only).
Accounting Regulation Bodies
National Accounting Management
Accounting Reports
The accounting structure should include:
- The balance sheet: Assets (current assets, liquid assets, bad debt allowance, salaries, other, income tax, inventories, expenses incurred, Total current assets), equipment (machinery property, Depreciation), and other assets ;
- The income statement: Revenues, Gross profit, Operating costs, Operating earnings, Total operating costs, Earnings before income taxes, Net income ;
- The management balance; and
- The appendices.
Publication Requirements
The Panamanian commercial law does not itemize the contents that have to be included in the accounting or the certification of the accounts. It is generally established practice that companies maintain a journal, a big ledger, the inventory and also annually prepare the necessary documents for financial analysis.
Professional Accountancy Bodies
Panama College of Public Certified Accountants , (Spanish only).
Certification and Auditing
In Panama, all companies as well as subsidiaries of foreign companies are required to seek the services of an external auditor to carry out an annual financial audit of their organization. The auditors have to be certified public accountants and have to satisfy the government of the accuracy of the published accounting information.
You can contact an external auditor: Deloitte, KPMG, Ernst & Young, PricewaterhouseCoopers.
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Latest Update: May 2024