E-Invoicing In Latin America, Mexico and Beyond: Following Europe’s Compliance Footsteps (Part 2)

In the first post in this series, we explored some of the high-level differences in electronic invoicing adoption in Europe, Latin America and the US. Then we double-clicked on recent rule changes in Mexico, courtesy of another site's coverage of the topic. What's most curious about electronic invoicing adoption occurring South of the border for the US is that it's more closely mirroring European trends. In a recent post over on Purchasing Insight, Pete Loughlin suggests that "some of the world's fastest growing economies are in Latin America and some countries have extremely high adoption rates [of electronic invoicing programs]. They are rapidly setting the pace for government mandated e-invoicing."

Perhaps European countries could even learn from the enforcement approaches and philosophy in Mexico. In this regard, "not complying with the new electronic invoicing regulations [in Mexico] is the same as tax fraud. That means that issuing or using electronic invoices that do not comply with the new regulations can lead to imprisonment from six months to 9 years depending on the amount involved. However as this is a financial felony, most of the times the sentence will be transitioned into paying a financial penalty."

Regardless, when we speak of P2P adoption in the US, we're not really that concerned with implementing such programs to stay out of jail -- or avoid government fines. Rather, we're after organizational purchasing, spending and payment compliance and control vs. meeting regulatory requirements for tax purposes. Yet with the potential for a VAT program in the US -- even conservative Presidential candidate Herman Cain has floated the notion as part of this tax reform plan -- it's likely that electronic invoicing will play a greater role in US tax compliance at some point in the future.

Today, as we reference in our recent Compass research paper, E-Invoicing Comes of Age – Discovering What's Possible From the Latest Electronic Invoicing/ Invoice Automation Capabilities, many organizations pursuing electronic invoicing initiatives in the US consider business driven KPIs first as they build a case for electronic invoicing. These KPIs may include AP labor cost in total, supplier management costs (to maintain required information and meet regulatory requirements), transactions per FTE and the cost/reduction of billing errors as core justifications for investing in electronic invoicing and invoice automation programs. However, Spend Matters believes that in the next decade, we'll begin to see new regulations that add regulatory and tax compliance to the top of the list in the US -- not to mention globally.

If you're interested in learning more about electronic invoicing in the global market, check out our latest free research covering the subject:

A Foundational Look at P2P Technologies

Jason Busch

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