Dear A.M. Costa Rica:
Personally I feel the value-added tax is one of the most fair taxes provided it is on everything. It is better than personal income tax in that you only can spend what you have, no loopholes.
Regardless how you got your income, either by employment, or investment or by illegal activities, we all need food clothing and shelter, regardless who we are, and you can only pay with what money you have. The wealthier will buy more expensive items, and the poor will buy less expensive items. The people visiting will purchase items, food and lodging and contribute, too. They are using resources while they are here, so why should they not contribute. If you feel you want to avoid taxes because you don’t feel you need to pay your fair share, then buy cheaper items and less of them. That way you will be paying less tax.
People could save their money and not have to worry about taxes on their investments. This may encourage the strength of the currency as it would give the banks more money for loans. This would help in the loans to businesses as the banks would have more money to work with. If loans are cheaper, then more people would borrow and improve their living through education and home improvements.
Keep it simple and fair. Governments always seem to complicate things. Then it makes the ordinary people feel that they are getting shafted or are missing out.