Tax Bills Finalised: Higher 50% Income Tax Threshold, Rise in Taxes on Capital Gains, Rent

By , 17 Oct 2019, 09:33 AM Lifestyle
Tax Bills Finalised: Higher 50% Income Tax Threshold, Rise in Taxes on Capital Gains, Rent JL Flanner

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STA, 17 October 2019 - The parliamentary Finance Committee has finalised a package of tax bills that slightly reduce the taxation of labour in favour of higher taxes on capital, after adopting last-minute amendments to counter criticism that the legislation amounted to a generous handout to the rich.

Under the legislative package confirmed last evening and slated for passage at the National Assembly plenary next week, the thresholds for all five brackets will be slightly increased and the general tax credit will rise.

In the second and third tax brackets, which cover mostly the middle class, the tax rate will drop by a percentage point.

Those on the minimum wage will see their earnings rise only marginally, while those on average pay can expect roughly EUR 150 more per year.

The original government proposal also involved a significant tax cut for the richest, as the threshold for when the highest, 50% tax rate kicks, was to rise by over EUR 9,000 to EUR 80,000.

Bud amidst criticism, especially by the opposition Left, that this amounted to a generous handout to the richest, the committee set the threshold at EUR 72,000, about a thousand euro higher than now.

There are only about 3,900 individuals who fall into this tax bracket, or 0.3% of all income tax payers.

The income tax changes are coupled with higher capital gains tax, which will rise to 27.5% from 25%. This rate will also apply to rental income.

Additionally, companies will be subject to a minimum corporate income tax rate of 7%, as tax credits for investments and losses from previous years will be reduced.

The committee debate saw parties clash on taxes along ideological lines.

The Left unsuccessfully sought to withdraw the income tax changes altogether, arguing that the legislation would create a huge budget shortfall while doing too little to benefit the poorest.

The centre-right opposition, on the other hand, came up with amendments that would reduce the taxation of capital and accused the Left of "trying to banish managers out of the country", as New Slovenia (NSi) MP Jožef Horvat put it.

All opposition amendments were voted down.

And even an MP of the coalition, businessman Marko Bandelli of the Alenka Bratušek Party (SAB), wondered why the Left hated people with high pay "who push our country forward".

Robert Pavšič of the ruling Marjan Šarec List (LMŠ) countered that the government was heeding warnings by international organisations that labour is too heavily taxed and capital too little.

"The underlying purpose is to provide greater tax equality," he said.

The government had originally proposed a much more far-reaching tax reform package but the bills, first presented in February, got watered down due to GDP growth data and forecasts showing that economic growth is cooling down.

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