Full investigation into the fate of repatriated funds

The General Secretariat of Public Revenues has called on monitoring authorities to examine whether funds recently repatriated from abroad have been locked in time deposits or invested.

It has also issued details about what the monitoring authorities will be looking out for while investigating money sent abroad during the period from 2009 to 2011, saying that the tax authorities will accept the purchase of all kinds of investment products as a reason for sending money to other countries provided it was arranged before the date the funds were forwarded.

Due to the fact that the tax authorities have no taxpayer data from before the year 2000, they will accept that money has come from sales of assets provided the account holder can provide transaction documents, and will refrain from checking the origin of that money.

So far the Greek tax authorities have investigated 630 cases of money sent abroad in the 2009-11 period, when the flight of capital from local banks reached a peak, with 270 million euros of taxes imposed on account holders. About 70 million euros of that has already been collected, while the rest concerns cases in which the taxpayers have resorted to the Commission for the Resolution of Tax Disagreements.

Meanwhile the increase in millions of taxpayers’ and enterprises’ expired debts to the state has led to grave concerns at the Finance Ministry, which is seeking 16.9 billion euros in tax revenues by the end of the year. A revenue shortfall of 327 million has already been registered in the first nine months of 2014.

Ministry officials said this week that even if the government does table the amendment for the repayment of expired debts in up to 100 installments next week, revenues are not expected to stage an immediate recovery. This is because the people or enterprises expected to sign up for the payment plan first will be those that are already consistent with their debt repayments, so the budget will not see an upturn in revenues for another six months, according to expectations.

The government is expecting direct and indirect tax revenues of 4.3 billion euros by the end of this month, 5.1 billion euros in November and 7.5 billion euros in December, as on top of the income tax, the single property tax (ENFIA) and other arrears from the past, drivers will also have to pay road tax by December 31.

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