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Greece Gets Tough on Tax Evasion in Tourism

Greek authorities announced this week that tourist enterprises primarily at popular destinations will be faced with regular on-the-spot inspections by special Independent Authority for Public Revenue (AADE) tax units.

Special fraud units will be conducting audits daily in efforts to ensure conformity to tax laws and mainly to identify violations related to non-issuance or in accurate issuance of receipts.

Penalties for violations include the suspension of store operation for periods of 48 hours to three years, as well as hefty fines. Businesses that have failed to issue retail receipts or issue inaccurate receipts will be subject to a fine equal to 50 percent of corresponding VAT of the non-issued receipts or a fine equal to 50 percent of the VAT difference of the displayed amount on the receipt.

Fines will be double for repeat offenders. Additionally, establishments may be shut down by special order which will be publicly displayed in English indicating that it was “sealed off due to tax violations”.

Violators in 15 special categories of enterprises that cannot be closed down will face fines between 1,000 to 60,000 euros. These professionals include hotels, hostels, furnished rooms, apartments, and short-term home leasing; campgrounds; car, motorcycle, moped, boat and aircraft rental companies; tourist bus services; pharmacies; doctors and dentists.

Crete. Photo source: Visit Greece

Photo source: Visit Greece

According to AADE’s action plan, more than 48,000 on-the-spot inspections have been planned for 2022 with a main focus on Agios Nikolaos, Rethymno and Chania (Crete), Santorini, Corfu, Komotini, Kymi (Evia), Kos, Mykonos, Naxos, Nafplio, Paros, Preveza, Samos, Syros for the months of July, August and September.

It should be noted that in 2019, one in three businesses in Greece appeared to have violated tax laws, according the AADE, with tourism-related businesses and taxi services among the main culprits.

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  1. Giorgios Reply

    How do I report a hotel for income evasion? I made a reservation in Corfu many months ago and now, one month before my arrival, they wrote to me asking me to pay by cash. I want to make sure I can pay by card but if they try to cancel my reservation, I should be able to report them for investigation.

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