Cyprus considers tax-free threshold for smaller deposits - govt source

NICOSIA, March 18 Mon Mar 18, 2013 5:52am EDT

NICOSIA, March 18 (Reuters) - Cyprus is considering the introduction of a tax-free threshold for smaller bank deposits, a government source said on Monday, in an attempt to win over lawmakers hostile to a bank levy announced over the weekend that is needed to avert a default.

"There is an attempt to mitigate the burden on smaller depositors, with a zero tax rate," the source told Reuters on condition of anonymity. He said the tax-free level was still under discussion.

Under the terms of a deal brokered with euro zone finance ministers on Friday, Cypriot authorities were to impose a 6.7 percent tax on bank deposits under 100,000 euros and 9.9. percent on deposits exceeding 100,000 euros.

Those two coefficients may stay the same, the source said, but added that things could change by the time final legislation is submitted to parliament.

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