Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) defended a decision by the nation’s Supreme Court (SCJN) to not return billions of pesos in tax refunds to Grupo Modelo, the nation’s largest producer of beer.

Speaking during his daily morning press conference at the National Palace on Tuesday, Jan. 29, the president said that the money, which Grupo Modelo, maker of Corona, Modelo and Pacífico beer, had claimed it was entitled to in its annual tax declaration, represented “billions of pesos in returns for value-added tax (IVA)” and had been deemed “non-processable” by the Mexican court.

The Treasury Secretariat had previously accepted Modelo’s declaration and was in the process of preparing the refund when the SCJN intervened.

The president offered no reason for the decision to suspend the refund, other than that it was a very large amount of money.

Nonetheless, AMLO said that he was pleased with the court’s decision, adding “if we had had to repay it … it would have represented billions of pesos.”

Grupo Modelo is a subsidiary of the Belgium-based Anheuser-Busch transnational beer corporation.


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