ECONOMY

Farm tax at 12 euros/1,000 sq.m.

The government is planning to calculate the single property tax to be imposed as of next year on properties outside town-planning zones depending on the surface area only, at an average rate of 12 euros per 1,000 square meters.

It appears that the agencies of the Finance Ministry do not have the time required to prepare the so-called objective values – i.e. the property prices used for tax purposes – which are used for properties within town-planning zones, so the government’s tax experts, from all three coalition partners, are set to decide to tax properties depending only on their surface area, although the rates for the tax reduction on arable land have yet to be determined.

In a meeting on Tuesday at the ministry, involving the general secretary for revenues, Haris Theoharis, and the representatives from PASOK and Democratic Left, the participants agreed that the single property tax to apply from January 1, 2014, should fetch 3.1 billion euros in total. That should break down to 1.7 billion euros from city properties, 700-800 million euros from farms and the rest from the properties held by enterprises and the Church of Greece.

The meeting will resume on Monday, with the agencies of the ministries of Finance and Agricultural Development bringing along more data. The tax rates and the tax-free levels of the new property levy will have been decided by the end of May. This is the tax that will replace both the FAP property tax and the special property levy paid via electricity bills.

PASOK and Democratic Left are proposing a tax-free threshold of 50,000 euros per owner, while the Finance Ministry appears to be in favor of having no thresholds, so that all properties are taxed from the first euro, with some exceptions. The minor coalition partners are also proposing tax rates ranging from 0.1 to 2 percent, while the ministry would prefer a top rate of 1 percent, provided there is no tax-free threshold.