Greeks pay the heav­i­est prop­erty tax af­ter the French and the Brits

Kathimerini English - - Focus - NIKOS ROUSSANOGLOU

High prop­erty tax­a­tion is ham­per- ing the re­cov­ery not only of the real es­tate mar­ket but also that of the econ­omy in gen­eral. Af­ter suc­ces­sive prop­erty tax hikes in re­cent years Greece has one of the Euro­pean Union’s high­est prop­erty tax bur­dens as a ra­tio to gross do­mes­tic prod­uct.

Euro­pean Com­mis­sion sta­tis­tics show that Greece is be­hind only France and Bri­tain in terms of prop­erty tax as a per­cent­age of 2015 GDP. Greek own­ers have to pay what amounts to 2.5 per­cent of this coun­try’s GDP, while in Ger­many the amount does not ex­ceed 0.5 per­cent. The rate is even lower for neigh­bor­ing coun­tries such as Italy, Cyprus, Bul­garia and Turkey.

In its lat­est eco­nomic bul­letin Al­pha Bank ar­gued the Sin­gle Prop­erty Tax (ENFIA) con­tin­ues to put peo­ple off in­vest­ing in the real es­tate mar­ket, where trans­ac­tions have all but dried up, while ob­struct­ing the re­bound of con­struc­tion ac­tiv­ity in the coun­try. “It is also a con­sid­er­able ob­sta­cle to any in­crease in res­i­den­tial prop­erty prices, along with the ex­pected re­cov­ery of GDP,” Al­pha an­a­lysts stress. On the other hand, it is re­mark­able that de­spite the bur­den on house­holds from ENFIA, the tax con­tin­ues to fetch rev­enues, as prop­erty levies of var­i­ous forms showed an in­crease for the fifth con­sec­u­tive year since 2011, when ENFIA was first in­tro­duced (as EETIDE).

How­ever, the is­sue now is the dis­crep­ancy seen be­tween the in­creased rates and cit­i­zens’ di­min­ish­ing tax­pay­ing ca­pac­ity, as the gap has broad­ened, ac­cord­ing to Al­pha’s re­port. The Bank of Greece agrees, say­ing in a re­cent re­port that the high tax­a­tion de- ters in­vestors, with a clear im­pact on the mar­ket and the en­tire econ­omy.

The fed­er­a­tion of prop­erty own­ers (POMIDA) has warned that the tax bur­den many own­ers face grows ev­ery year, while it is ac­tu­ally the num­ber of those who pay that should in­crease.

It is quite re­mark­able that de­spite the bur­den on house­holds from ENFIA, the tax con­tin­ues to fetch rev­enues, as prop­erty levies of var­i­ous forms showed an in­crease for the fifth con­sec­u­tive year since 2011.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Greece

© PressReader. All rights reserved.