Friday February 27, 2015 Search
Weather | Athens
11o C
6o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
Samaras targets end to solidarity tax

The scrapping or reduction of the solidarity tax and possibly the lowering of value-added tax (VAT) are at the core of Prime Minister Antonis Samaras’s strategy for the months ahead, which will also determine if Greece will go to early general elections.

Sources told Kathimerini that Samaras would like to reduce or abolish the solidarity tax, an extraordinary levy on income introduced at the beginning of 2011, as of the beginning of 2015. If possible he would also like to lower VAT. Samaras would like to announce these measures at the Thessaloniki International Fair in September and then implement them from January 1.

The prime minister believes that the lightening of the tax burden on Greeks, particularly the middle classes, will be a key factor in determining support for the government as it will also signal the start of emergency fiscal measures introduced during the crisis being gradually lifted. Scrapping the solidarity tax would also prevent the government having to face a tricky vote in Parliament next year. The levy is due to expire at the end of this year and any plans to keep it in place would need MPs’ approval.

If the government can avoid renewing the solidarity tax, it is likely that Samaras will seek a confidence vote in Parliament. This could force independent MPs, as well as those within the weakened Democratic Left (DIMAR) and Independent Greeks to pick sides ahead of SYRIZA attempting to force national elections over the nomination for the successor to President Karolos Papoulias, whose tenure ends in February.

The government’s ability to scrap the solidarity tax depends to a large extent on how debt relief talks with the eurozone progress later this year and what view the troika takes on Greece’s public finances at that time. The International Monetary Fund approved on Friday the release of another 3.4-billion-euro loan for Greece but also stressed that the country’s fiscal adjustment needs to continue.

“Additional fiscal adjustment is necessary to ensure debt sustainability, through durable, high-quality measures, while strengthening the social safety net,” said Naoyuki Shinohara, the IMF’s deputy managing director. “It is essential that the authorities continue to improve tax collection, combat evasion and strengthen expenditure control.”

Shinohara also expressed concern about some weaknesses in the Greek economy. “Despite significant wage adjustment, export performance remains comparatively weak. The redoubling of efforts to liberalize product and service markets is therefore welcome,” he said.

“Addressing the very high level of nonperforming loans remains an important priority,” added the IMF official. “While there is no acute stability risk, it is critical for the economic recovery that banks be adequately capitalized upfront to recognize losses on the basis of realistic assumptions about loan recovery.”

ekathimerini.com , Saturday May 31, 2014 (16:41)  
German lawmakers approve extension of bailout program for Greece
Prosecutor orders probe into claims of abuse at Amygdaleza migrant facility
Tsipras reversal draws Greek sympathy as party rumblings rise
Gov’t raises concern over payment to IMF in March
ANALYSIS
Restive Bundestag to approve Greek bailout extension
Germany's parliament will vote on Friday on the extension of Greece’s bailout by four months and will duly back it though we can expect some grumbling from a clutch of lawmakers. Angela Merk...
German MPs begin debate on extending Greek bailout program
German lawmakers began debating an extension of Greece’s bailout, with the measure expected to pass as Chancellor Angela Merkel’s coalition musters its overwhelming majority in parliament. F...
Inside Business
SOCCER
Ten-man Olympiakos couldn´t overcome Dnipro
Olympiakos drew 2-2 with Dnipro from Ukraine at home on Thursday, playing almost the entire second half with a man down, to bow out of the Europa League, despite facing an opponent which on ...
BASKETBALL
Greens lose at Maccabi but preserve head-to-head advantage
Panathinaikos suffered its third loss in eight games at the second stage of the Euroleague going down 73-70 at Maccabi Tel Aviv on Thursday, but has preserved its better head-to-head record ...
Inside Sports
COMMENTARY
A breath of opportunity
We are still living in the Greece we know: The government is struggling to explain its retreat in the face of our creditors, the opposition (including dissidents in SYRIZA) smells blood, we ...
EDITORIAL
Give the green light
Foreign investment is a crucial component of economic recovery and Greece needs to start bringing it in fast. Instead, the government, like others before it, is scaring it off in a bid to sa...
Inside Comment
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
 RECENT NEWS
1. German lawmakers approve extension of bailout program for Greece
2. Prosecutor orders probe into claims of abuse at Amygdaleza migrant facility
3. Restive Bundestag to approve Greek bailout extension
4. German MPs begin debate on extending Greek bailout program
5. Tsipras reversal draws Greek sympathy as party rumblings rise
6. Ten-man Olympiakos couldn´t overcome Dnipro
more news
Today
This Week
1. Tsipras reversal draws Greek sympathy as party rumblings rise
2. German MPs begin debate on extending Greek bailout program
3. Restive Bundestag to approve Greek bailout extension
4. Prosecutor orders probe into claims of abuse at Amygdaleza migrant facility
5. German MPs begin debate on extending Greek bailout program
6. German lawmakers approve extension of bailout program for Greece
Today
This Week
1. Greece prepares extension request for eurozone approval
2. Time for Alexis Tsipras to keep his nerve
3. Stubborn but not almighty
4. Greek bailout deal faces review by euro officials next week
5. Greece says eurozone deal won time as cash bled from banks
6. The ignorance of the West about the culture of Islam
   Find us ...
  ... on
Twitter
     ... on Facebook   
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright © 2015, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.