BUSINESS

Income tax load mostly burdens an unlucky tenth of taxpayers

PROKOPIS HATZINIKOLAOU

TAGS: Taxation

About a tenth of Greek taxpayers forked out 60 percent of the total income tax paid last year, according to data released on Thursday by the Independent Authority for Public Revenue.

The statistics showed that 513,509 taxpayers with annual incomes of 30,000 euros or over paid the lion’s share of taxes due to the state’s inability to contain tax evasion, restructure the public sector and make the necessary reforms.

Each time public finances go off course, it is taxpayers with monthly revenues of more than 2,500 euros who are forced to plug the gaps. On average, these people pay in excess of 9,200 euros in taxes per annum.

And we mustn’t ignore the contribution of taxpayers earning between 20,000 and 30,000 euros a year: They pay a sum of 1.43 billion euros in income tax per annum, which takes their contribution to 17.94 percent.

In total, about 6,194,000 taxpayers declared 2015 incomes of 75.1 billion euros to the tax authorities last year. This increased to taxable revenues of 82.1 billion euros following the incorporation of assets used for the determination of undeclared incomes (known as “tekmiria”), and the income tax due amounted to 8 billion euros.

The processing of available statistics also illustrates that declared incomes fluctuate from year to year according to the state of the Greek economy: For example, incomes expanded when the economy stabilized in 2014, while they shrank the year after that because of the uncertainty and tough austerity measures that followed.

Declared incomes in the last five years have been as follows: They amounted to 89.1 billion euros in 2011, 80.1 billion euros in 2012, 71.2 billion euros in 2013, 76.01 billion euros in 2014 and 75.2 billion euros in 2015.

From all this, we can conclude that Greek taxpayers’ incomes crumbled by about 17.9 billion euros in the first two years after the start of the bailout program. In particular Greek salary workers have lost taxable declared revenues of approximately 5 billion euros in the period from 2011 to 2015, while the biggest losses have been sustained by taxpayers in Attica.

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