Online platforms targeted by tax authorities

Online platforms targeted by tax authorities

All online platforms, Greek and foreign, selling goods and services, must send transaction data involving Greek individuals and companies to the Independent Public Revenue Authority (AADE), a draft bill provision states.

The data will help the tax authority find any non-declared income, such as for property owners renting through Airbnb, or purchases whose extent is not supported by an individual’s income declaration.

The activities covered in the new bill include any leasing of residential or commercial property, and even parking spaces; personal services; any sale of goods; and any transport leases.

This is not such a stretch. Already, short-term rental services platforms are sending the relevant data to the Greek tax authorities once a year, and delivery services do the same every three months.

For those online platforms that choose not to cooperate with AADE, there will be consequences. Fines could reach €500,000 and, more importantly, they could see their business in Greece temporarily suspended.

Another crackdown will involve Points of Sale that are not connected to registers and do not send the transaction data to the tax authorities. In this case, fines could reach up to €200,000.

The bill also makes it easier to share any transaction data with tax authorities of the other 26 European Union members. The data to be shared include names, addresses, tax identification numbers (ΑΦΜ), the seller’s IBAN, amounts received, commissions, fees, taxes on the transaction, property addresses, duration of leasing and others. Cooperation among tax authorities will be enhanced, with inspectors able to cross borders to do their jobs and common investigations facilitated.

The Finance Ministry estimates tax evasion at between €8-10 billon. Officials have said that they can trace about half of it. Τhe draft bill, which will be debated in Parliament in the coming weeks, will go some way into detecting some of the evasion. And transactions at platforms are more easily traceable. The connection of the POSs will be a more difficult proposition that will require onsite inspections to ensure compliance.

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