Chr. Staikouras: There is no possibility of reducing VAT rates at the moment

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“At the moment, there is no possibility of reducing VAT rates,” said Finance Minister Christos Staikouras. He pointed out that “we can not derail the budget in January”.

As he mentioned (speaking on the radio station “Parapolitika”), there are tax cuts, such as insurance contributions and solidarity contributions in the private sector, which are being extended this year and there must be budgetary space on the one hand for their permanence and on the other for additional interventions. At the same time, he stated that the 2021 budget closes with a primary deficit of 7% of GDP (approximately 13 billion euros), which should be zeroed in 2023. Asked about possible “gentlemen’s agreements” to address the accuracy, he said that “the government will take initiatives to reduce costs in family budgets, especially the lower incomes”.

The minister referred to the ECB forecasts, according to which there will be a significant de-escalation of cost growth in the second quarter of this year. However, he added that in the next period the Ministry of Finance will “run” unfavorable scenarios of budget execution for full coverage of any eventuality.

As Mr. Staikouras said, both for the health crisis and for energy accuracy, “we will continue to help households and businesses as long as necessary”. Especially for the health crisis, he pointed out that “if it lasts longer than the basic scenario, then the financial staff will act accordingly (such as with the repayable advances)”.

Finally, the Minister announced the exit from the enhanced supervisory regime in 2022 and the disbursement of a double installment of the Greek bond profits held by the ECB and the European central banks. While, for the acquisition of investment grade, he stated that “the goal in the basic scenario, without turmoil, is for 2023. I wish we can achieve it sooner”.

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Source From: Capital

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