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Travel & Tourism industry news by Greek Travel Pages (gtp)

‘Uncooperative’ Short-term Rental Platforms May Face Stiff Fines in Greece

Photo credit: Maria Ziegler (www.schluesseldienstvergleich.eu)

Home sharing platforms operating in Greece, which fail to provide information requested by the country’s tax authority may soon be faced with hefty fines, according to a draft bill on taxation tabled recently in parliament.

Greece’s Independent Authority for Public Revenue (AADE) may impose penalties of up to 100,000 euros on short-term home rental companies which do not provide information requested about their users.

More specifically, the draft law stipulates that the AADE has the right to file a request within a given deadline to any online home sharing platform, based in Greece or not, seeking information about persons using the platform as sellers (property owners) who may be liable for taxation in Greece.

Should the platform fail to provide this information, it may have to pay fines of up to 100,000 euros, while property owners not declaring their short-term rental activity are faced with penalties of up to 30,000 euros.

Photo Source: Airbnb

It should be reminded, that in 2017, Airbnb refused to turn over the personal data of its customers to the Greek finance ministry claiming that “personal data are subject to strict rules to protect privacy and we want to work together on a better way forward”.

In the meantime, a special committee will be set up which will initially generate recommendations to the finance ministry for the introduction of pricing zones based on property value.

The government had announced earlier this year that it would be tightening measures to clamp down on illegal home sharing activity, including, among others, instantly removing from online sharing platforms all undeclared properties (those without a registry number); implementing new security requirements; and requiring mandatory property and visitor insurance to cover both owner and guest according to international standards.

At the same time, economy and tourism ministry officials are also discussing a 40 percent tax deduction for energy and facade upgrades as well as for fixed costs including water, electricity, utilities and municipal charges.

About the Author
Chicago-born and raised, Maria Paravantes has over two decades of journalistic experience covering tourism and travel, gastronomy, arts, music and culture, economy and finance, politics, health and social issues for international press and media. She has worked for Reuters, The Telegraph, Huffington Post, Billboard Magazine, Time Out Athens, the Athens News, Odyssey Magazine and SETimes.com, among others. She has also served as Special Advisor to Greece’s minister of Foreign Affairs, and to the mayor of Athens on international press and media issues. Maria is currently a reporter, content and features writer for GTP Headlines.

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