October revenues post increase
The first installment of the Single Property Tax (ENFIA) and the increase in value-added tax takings thanks to the extended use of credit and debit cards have led to an increase in budget revenues in October.
Sources say that tax revenues beat their target by 190 million euros last month: The monthly revenues goal had been set at 4.19 billion euros, while the final figure was 4.38 billion. Compared with October 2014 tax revenues went up by 470 million euros, while those from customs offices grew 244 million euros, for a total increase of 714 million.
The Finance Ministry has realized that the use of plastic money helps to contain tax evasion, and as a result the government is hoping its plan for all enterprises to install card terminals – which will be mandatory – will be well under way by March 2016. It is also aiming to have decided by then on all the incentives for taxpayers to further increase their use of credit and debit cards.
Of course the positive results in terms of October’s state revenues do not mean that the gap which opened up in the first 10 months of the year has been covered.
What the ministry is focusing on is hitting the revised target of a primary deficit of 0.25 percent of gross domestic product for this year.
Besides the revenues increase, there is good news in terms of debts to the state as well as debts of the state to third parties: The creation of expired debts by taxpayers eased in October to reach 600 million euros, against 1.5 billion in September. The total exceeds 80 billion euros. The state’s expired debts to the private sector, including taxpayers and suppliers, amounted to 5.95 billion euros in September, posting a relatively small rise of 25 million euros from 5.925 billion in August.
Although the state remains unable to pay off its debts to third parties, the fact that the creation of debt has slowed generates optimism: The September data released yesterday showed that the state’s expired debts to suppliers reached 5.14 billion from 5.12 billion in August, while outstanding tax rebates dropped to 807 million euros from 809 million at end-August.