The government will be tweaking the Single Property Tax (ENFIA) rather than abolishing it, statements by Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras suggested at the Thessaloniki International Fair over the weekend, while opposition leader Kyriakos Mitsotakis told Skai TV that the tax could go down 30 percent within two years if he were elected.
Even tweaking the ENFIA tax will require the approval of the country’s creditors, as the exemption from the tax of the most troubled social groups means that offsetting measures have to be imposed or a greater burden must fall on those with larger properties, as the amount that needs to be collected must stay at 2.65 billion euros.
Therefore, ENIA will continue for 2017 despite the fact that government officials up to a few days ago insisted that 2016 would have been the last year in which it was applied.
Tsipras said the government is planning to expand the exemptions so that those who currently enjoy a 50 percent discount from the tax would be relieved of it. This discount only applies to owners who satisfy all of the following conditions: That their total taxable family income of the previous year does not exceed 9,000 euros, rising by 1,000 euros per dependent person (spouse and children); that the sum of the surface of all properties in the same family does not exceed 150 square meters; and that the total value of the properties does not exceed 85,000 euros for an unmarried owner, 150,000 euros for a couple with up to one child and 200,000 euros for families with at least two children.
For the future, the prime minister announced the abolition of ENFIA and its replacement with another form of property tax, as well as reductions to indirect taxes.
Tsipras also said that in order to promote the voluntary revelation of hidden incomes, the government will offer one last chance to people hiding their money abroad, through paying just the corresponding tax, without any penalties. However, he warned that for those who insist on hiding their money in other countries, “the period of impunity is over.”