Athens International Airport (AIA) has denied recent media claims and reports about a pending legal dispute it has with the Greek Government concerning its VAT obligations.
According to AIA, the articles and reports are providing “false and completely unsubstantiated information” on the issue.
The following information has been released by AIA “in order to restore the truth.”
AIA is always up to date with its obligations and has no debt to the Greek state.
– ΑΙΑ has fulfilled and keeps fulfilling all of its legal obligations and, therefore, has no past due debts to the Greek State, either from VAT, or other direct, or indirect taxes, social contributions, or municipal duties.
– Since the first day of its operations, AIA lawfully applies the applicable VAT on all sales which are subject to VAT and makes the relevant payments to the Greek State always on time. More specifically, from 2002-2013, an amount of 84 million euros has been paid to the Greek State in VAT.
– Moreover, AIA, from 2002 to 2013, has paid to the Greek State 1.038 billion euros as dividends, taxes on dividends and extraordinary taxes, which constitute the largest portion of the positive financial returns of the Company (at the level of 74%). The Company contributes substantially to the Greek economy and the growth of our country with added economic value, which corresponds to 2.63% of Greek GDP.
Reports of alleged debts of AIA to the Greek State reaching 500, 600 or more million euros are products of imagination and completely unsubstantiated.
– As regards the respective legal dispute which is not related to the construction company HOCHTIEF, or any of its subsidiaries, AIA, having timely and lawfully proceeded with an advance payment of 46 million euros, imposed by the competent tax authority for the period 1998-2012, an amount that, due to surcharges, has eventually risen to 167 million euros in total, has thereafter appealed to the Greek Administrative Courts and the London Court of International Arbitration, against this tax imposition, considering same as unlawful, in exercising its legal rights. AIA will exercise all of its rights as provided for under the Airport Development Agreement and the applicable proceedings.
The decision of the Greek Administrative Courts concern 6 million euros and not 600 million euros.
– The decision recently issued by the Administrative Court of Appeals, as reported in recent press clippings, relates to part of the total dispute of 12 million euros, imposed for the period 2004-09, of which 50% has already been paid in advance in accordance with standing legislation.
– It is very surprising that, while the court case is still ongoing and not yet irrevocably resolved by the Greek Administrative Courts, the aforementioned amount has been arbitrarily “multiplied”, making references to unsubstantiated amounts of 500, 600 or even more hundreds of millions of euros, all of them being outrageously false, products of imagination and therefore, without substance.
AIA, further to allegations presenting the Company as the “biggest tax evader,” along with similar arbitrary judgments and statements like “bonuses for employees and pensioners would not have been cut, should the Germans paid their taxes in our country, like the 400 million that were saved from the cutting or the abolishment of wages, bonuses and pensions,” reserves all of its legal rights to safeguard its lawful interests, as well as those of its shareholders, the Greek State included.