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Greece Considers Mandatory Credit Card Use to Combat Tax Evasion on Islands

credit_card_useCredit card use for transactions of more than 70 euros at Aegean islands is expected to become mandatory, according to a new multi-bill of reforms to be tabled soon in Greek Parliament.

The multi-bill includes numerous tax collection measures that the government has agreed upon with its lenders.

According to reports, the government is planning to introduce the measure of mandatory credit card use in an aim to combat tax evasion on the Aegean islands, especially those where “tourist arrivals increase but revenue from VAT collection drops”.

The exclusive use of credit cards for transactions of more than 70 euros is said to be aimed at Aegean islands with over 4,100 residents. The measure is also expected to be enforced to Lesvos, Chios, Samos, Thassos and the islands of the Northern Sporades.

The only transactions of over 70 euros that can be made in cash are those between civilians and public sector bodies.

Among the new reforms the bill seeks to introduce is one that sees a three to five percent luxury tax per night to be charged on accommodation in 5-star hotels and luxury resorts.

Also contained in the multi-bill is a new three percent tax charge on receipts issued in bars, nightclubs and luxury restaurants at the Aegean islands every year from April 1 to October 31.

Owners of yachts from 5 meters and up should also expect to be taxed.

In addition, reports mentioned that the government is also considering to tax the 500 richest Greeks based on their tax returns.

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