Poland: Retail tax to launch on Sep 1 at latest, bank tax could be adjusted

The government’s retail turnover tax will go into effect on Sep 1 at latest, in part as the Aug 1 launch date most recently expected could be difficult to hit, Minister and Law and Justice (PiS) economic policy guru Henryk Kowalczyk told the state news agency PAP on Monday.

Kowalczyk said he hoped the Sejm, which is now working on the bill, would vote through the bill at its next sitting on Jul 5-7, the Senate would then go to work, and the bill could be ready for the president’s signature in late July. The tax is to be 0.8% on relevant retail revenue from PLN 17mn to PLN 170mn a month and 1.4% on revenue above PLN 170mn. The tax, if it goes into effect on Aug 1, is to raise some PLN 630mn this year, and PLN 1.5bn in a calendar year.

The bank tax might be adjusted, but a final decision would be taken near the end of the year, Kowalczyk said. He noted that inflows were lower than planned. PiS targeted income of PLN 5.5bn this year, but the latest Finance Ministry budget data show that annual inflows will likely be closer to PLN 4bn. The current tax is 0.44% of adjusted assets for banks, insurers, and other financial institutions.

Overall, PiS’s two sectoral taxes look likely to bring in revenue of PLN 4.5bn this year, which is well below the PLN 9bn once talked about by the party. This year, there is no problem due to one-off income from the LTE auction and the NBP as profit. But in 2017, more problems could exist. Or, it will lift the execution rise that much more regarding the Finance Ministry’s plan to boost tax collection.

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