Costa Rica, literally meaning ‘Rich Coast’ in Spanish, is a country in Central America (bordered by Nicaragua, Panama, the Pacific Ocean, and Ecuador). The name La Costa Rica was first applied by Christopher Columbus in 1502 when he sailed to the eastern shores of Costa Rica during his final voyage and reported the presence of vast quantities of gold jewellery among the natives.
Pharmaceuticals, financial outsourcing, software development, and ecotourism have become the prime industries in Costa Rica’s economy. Many foreign companies (manufacturing and services) operate in Costa Rica’s Free Trade Zones where they benefit from investment and tax incentives. These company’s employee over 120,000 staff and include the U.S. companies Amazon, Intel, Dell, HP, Bayer, Bosch, DHL, IBM and Okay Industries. The tax incentives include 100% exemption from corporate income tax for the first eight years of operation, and then 50% exemption for another four years.
"You’d be stupid not to try to cut your tax bill and those that don’t are stupid in business"
- Bono: U2