ECONOMY

ENFIA cut for all comes closer

enfia-cut-for-all-comes-closer

The Finance Ministry is considering the abolition of an amendment introduced by the previous government for a 10 percent average reduction of the Single Property Tax (ENFIA), the cost of which is estimated at 265 million euros, without ruling out New Democracy’s own program on property taxation as of this year.

Under the existing legislation, owners of properties adding up to 200,000 euros are entitled to an average reduction of 10 percent up to a maximum of 100 euros per year.

This means that approximately 470,000 property owners with assets exceeding that level will see no reduction whatsoever this year even though they currently pay almost 50 percent of the total revenues brought in by the ENFIA tax.

The new government is therefore considering scrapping the amendment and possibly bringing forward its own plan for property taxation.

A senior government official told Kathimerini on Thursday that the reason the new administration is canceling the ENFIA discount is the fiscal gap created by the handouts made by former prime minister Alexis Tsipras in May, suggesting that the decision is intended to help plug the hole in this year’s budget.

The same official pointed out that the government’s own program will be announced in Parliament over the weekend and will reveal the Finance Ministry’s plans for this and the following years.

In any case, the Independent Authority for Public Revenue is eager to hear the government’s decisions so that it can start calculating the 2019 ENFIA taxes.

The timing means that its entire staff will have to be in full operational mode over the next weeks in order to implement the ministry’s policy within August, as the first of the five ENFIA installments should be due by end-September.

For that target to be attained, the government’s changes will have to be cleared in Parliament by August 10.

Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis had pledged a 30-percent reduction to the ENFIA tax, though the time period over which this would happen remains unknown.