VAT hike in food service will be the ‘kiss of death’ for the sector

A return of the value-added tax on food service to 23 percent from the current 13 percent would amount to a kiss of death for the sector, according to the head of the association of restaurant chains (SEPOA), Thanassis Papanikolaou.

The SEPOA chief told Kathimerini that the impact will be huge on restaurants, bars, cafeterias and tavernas, as besides the sector’s VAT hike, the related sector of tourism will also see a rate increase.

“We have the experience from 2011 when the increase from 13 to 23 percent in food service brought the shutdown of 4,500 enterprises and the loss of 40,000 jobs,» he stated.