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Highlights: Greece unveils fresh batch of austerity measures
March 3, 2010 / 12:42 PM / 8 years ago

Highlights: Greece unveils fresh batch of austerity measures

ATHENS (Reuters) - The Greek Government on Wednesday unveiled 4.8 billion euros worth of new austerity measures designed to meet European Union demands for extra savings and pave the way for any rescue from the threat of bankruptcy.

Following are highlights of the measures as outlined by government spokesman George Petalotis.

TOTAL CUTS

“The total fiscal impact of the additional measures is 4.8 billion euros or 2 percent of GDP, raised in equal measure from increased revenues and lower spending.”

TAX ON THE RICH

“We are introducing a one-off contribution on private individuals who earned more than 100,000 euros in 2009. The contribution is set at 1 percent.”

INFRASTRUCTURE CUT

“The national element of the public investment program is reduced by 5 percent or 500 million euros.”

PUBLIC SECTOR PAY

“We bringing order to overtime pay, reducing it by 30 percent and we are also lowering travel expenses.”

“We are putting a much lower ceiling on salaries and additional benefits in the public sector. Bonuses to public sector employees are forbidden.”

GAMING TAX

“The government pledges that revenue generated by the licensing of OPAP games or any other gaming licenses will be spent on employment measures.”

CREDIBILITY

“The government is fighting against a huge deficit of credibility vis-a-vis its creditors who are staging a huge battle against the worst fiscal situation in this country’s history.”

OFFSHORE COMPANIES

“There will be a further increase in the tax of offshore companies to 15 percent.”

REVENUE MEASURES

“The immediate measures to increase revenues are worth 2.4 billion euros with VAT (bands) rising from 4.5 to 5 percent, 9 to 10 percent and 19 to 21 percent.”

FUEL TAX

“Special fuel taxes are being raised further to yield 1.1 billion euros.”

TAXING YACHTS, JEWELS, CARS

“A tax on luxury goods will be introduced ... on cars with a market value above 35,000 euros, yachts and jewels.”

PROPERTY TAX

“We are introducing a one-off social responsibility contribution on the owners of large property which will yield about 200 million euros.”

CHURCH TAX

“We are taxing the church, not just its large property holdings but also the revenues generated by its commercial use which are not currently taxed.”

Reporting by the Athens bureau; compiled by Paul Hoskins

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