BUSINESS

New overdue taxes expected to reach 12-13 bln this year

PROKOPIS HATZINIKOLAOU

TAGS: Economy

The amount of money that taxpayers owe to the state soared by 5.47 billion euros in the first half of the year, according to the latest official data made available.

Meanwhile, authorities are ordering about 900 confiscations a day in an effort to recoup the money owed by Greeks.

According to data published by the Independent Authority for Public Revenue, about 3.8 million individuals and businesses owe the Greek state a total of more than 95 billion euros. This amount is increasing every month as taxpayers cannot meet their obligations and are leaving taxes unpaid.

When one takes into account the fact that one in three taxpayers who had to pay income tax failed to make the end-July deadline for the first installment, it becomes clear that things aren’t looking too promising for public revenues.

Finance Ministry officials expect that total overdue debts will grow in the coming months as a result of the extra obligations that are kicking in now, namely income tax and the ENFIA property levy.

The ministry officials expect that the extra debts which will be racked up this year will rise from 5.47 billion euros to around 12-13 billion by the end of the year. However, they are also predicting that there will be a rise in the amount collected from overdue debts. They believe that authorities may manage to gather some 4 to 5 billion euros this year.

Tax offices are confiscating the pensions and bank deposits of around 900 people or businesses a day to as part of their effort to collect overdue debts. Since the beginning of the year, 112,058 confiscations have been carried out. Almost 20,000 of those came in June.

According to the data published by the Independent Authority for Public Revenue yesterday, of a total 95.6 billion euros in overdue debt, 90.1 billion was created before the start of this year, and a total of 951,114 taxpayers have had money seized by authorities.

The data also show that from a total of 3.8 million debtors, roughly 2.4 million owe the state between 1 and 500 euros, amounting to just 340 million euros.

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