Bolivia, with the 2nd largest reserves of natural gas in South America, exports natural gas, silver, zinc, and soy which constitute more than 70% of total exports. The economic growth averaged 4.9% between 2004 and 2014 due to prudent macroeconomic policy and high commodity prices. The Bolivian government’s 2016-2020 National Economic and Social Development Plan is aimed at maintaining an average growth rate of 5% between 2016 and 2020. The focus areas for investment include hydrocarbon exploration, infrastructure, industrialization of natural gas, and hydroelectric energy generation.
Currency: Bolivian Boliviano
Principal language: Spanish
Government: Presidential Representative Democratic Republic
Capital City: Sucre
Major Cities: Santa Cruz, Cochabamba, La Paz
Generally, employees in Bolivia are hired under indefinite agreements. Both employees and employers can enter into fixed-term agreements only under specific circumstances. Employment contracts are required to be in writing and approved by the Ministry of Labor. An employment contract must contain the following details:
- Names of the parties
- Nature of the work or service
- Age, nationality, civil status, and domicile of the employee
- Whether the work or service will be delivered or rendered by time units, specific work, by task or under more than one of these arrangements
- Duration of the contract
- Beneficiaries of employees
- Amount, method and period of payment of the agreed salary
- Place of work.
Employment contracts must be drafted in Spanish to be valid.
The regular work schedule comprises 8 hours per day and 48 hours in a week. Female employees cannot work for more than 40 hours in a week. The working hours are classified as follows:
Ordinary Daytime Working Hours:
- Working hours between 6 am and 8 pm
- Do not exceed 8 hours in a day
Night time Working Hours:
- Working hours between 8 pm and 6 am
- Do not exceed 7 hours a night
- Compensated by an increase of 25% to 50% in pay based on the circumstances
Extraordinary Working Hours or Overtime:
- Hours that exceed the regular work hours
- Compensated by an increase of 100% in pay
- Must not exceed 2 hours a day
Work done on public holidays is paid at 100% premium over the regular pay while the work on Sundays is compensated by thrice the regular pay or granting a compensatory day off.
The following national holidays are observed in Bolivia:
- New Year's Day
- Plurinational State Day
- Good Friday
- Labor Day
- Corpus Christi
- Aymara New Year
- National Day
- All Saints' Day
- Christmas Day
Employees are entitled to annual leave after completing 1 year of employment as below:
- From 1 to 5 years of uninterrupted services - 15 working days
- From 5 to 10 years of uninterrupted services - 20 working days
- After 10 years of uninterrupted services: 30 working days
Female employees are entitled to 90 days’ maternity leave out of which 45 days can be taken before the childbirth and 45 days after. They are also entitled to a 1-hour period for breastfeeding during the child’s 1st year which should not be included in the 2-hour break period.
Employees are entitled to 5 days’ sick leave in a year provided they furnish a medical certificate showing their incapacity to work. They must be attended at a health entity they are registered, without having to bear any additional cost.
Spouses or partners of pregnant employees are entitled to 3 days’ paternity leave for the childbirth and protected from termination for 1 year post-childbirth.
Adoptive parents are entitled to 2 months’ paid leave post-adoption and protected from dismissal for 1-year post the final decision permitting adoption.
A dependent who is registered with the employee for social security and requires urgent attendance is entitled to the short-term health services subject to certain regulations.
Pension and Social Security
The Social Security Rate, a tax related to labor income is paid by both employers and employees and currently stands at 22.21%. Employers are required to make the following contributions:
- Contribution to the National Healthcare body - 10% of employees’ salary
- Housing contribution - 2% of employees’ salary
- Contribution to the Institute of Professional Formation (INFOCAL) - 1% of employees’ salary
- Solidarity contribution for pensions - 3% of employees’ salary
- Professional risk premium (to cover special insurance for professional risk) - 1.71% of employees’ salary
Employers are required to deduct the amounts from employees’ salaries as follows:
- Retirement contribution - 10%
- Common risk (to cover special insurance for common risk) - 1.71%
- Pension Funds Administrators' administration commission - 0.5%
- Solidarity pensions contribution - 0.5%
Employers are also required to deduct the national solidarity contributions under the new pension law:
- Income above BOB13,000 - 1%
- Income between BOB25,000 and BOB35,000 - 5%
- Income above BOB35,000 - 10%
The “Caja Nacional de Salud” provides medical assistance to covered employees for any illness. The benefits are provided in the form of monthly annuities based on employees’ years of contributions. Employees are required to contribute up to 12.21% of their monthly remuneration to the fund. Disability benefits are paid based on an employee’s degree of disability.
How GPS can Help
With our Global PEO/Employer of Record services, companies can expand into Bolivia and hire their employees without having to establish a branch office or subsidiary in Bolivia.
- Your candidate is hired via our Bolivia PEO. If needed, we can also help you find the right talent in any country with our comprehensive global staffing services.
- Your new employee begins work quickly as we take care of employment contracts, statutory and non-statutory benefits, and running their payroll - all in full compliance with Bolivia laws.
- Global PEO Services experts manage all day-to-day operational issues such as employee expenses, and severance/termination if required.
- With no contractor risks, pass on the compliance burden to Global PEO Services.
Spin Off/M&A Support
- Ensure continuity of payroll, benefits and HR support when acquiring or spinning off a business with employees overseas.
24/7 Support in 100+ Countries
- Empower your teams with 24/7 support and a single point-of-contact model in which experienced client services directors are in continuous communication with information and advice.
- We are backed by a mix of 300+ multidisciplinary experts from HR, Payroll, Finance, Tax, and Legal domains who are ready to respond to the expected and unexpected needs of your business on the shortest notice.
Easy Visibility into Your Employee Time & Attendance and Benefits Data
With our Global PEO, you get access to Mihi, our proprietary SaaS solution for time and attendance, vacation, leave management and benefits enrollment and management. Mihi enables clients to have easy access to employee data in real time. It is designed specifically for companies with a global workforce, especially when working in multiple countries with low headcount.
Ready for Growth When You Are
When ready, we can seamlessly transition you from the PEO/EOR model to your own legal entity and provide ongoing international HR, finance, legal, compliance and staffing support. Learn more about our end-to-end international expansion services.