Austria Eyes Tax Relief For Families
23 April 2013
Posted by: Author: Ulrika Lomas
Source: Ulrika Lomas
Austrian Finance Minister Maria Fekter has announced that reducing the tax burden on families with children is to be the focus of the Government's future tax reform.
Finance Minister Fekter explained that once additional scope has been created via budgetary consolidation, the Government plans to lower the fiscal burden on families. Abolishing some of the numerous tax breaks will serve to finance tax relief measures for families in Austria "without any problem," Fekter insisted. Here, Fekter alluded to a Court of Auditors report, revealing that the excessive number of tax shelters (558) make Austria’s tax law "unnecessarily complicated," and cost the tax administration in the region of EUR9bn (USD11.7bn) a year.
Underlining the need to improve the tax situation for families in Austria, Finance Minister Fekter stressed that the decision of whether to have one or more children should not rest on affordability. Introducing tax relief will undoubtedly send out a vital signal to families and will definitely prove to be the "right investment" in Austria's future, Fekter made clear.
Recently published figures show that Austria’s deficit totalled around 2.5% of gross domestic product (GDP) last year. The Government had initially provided for a 2012 budget deficit of over 3% of GDP. Welcoming the positive results, Fekter emphasized at the time that Austria is "making exemplary strides in consolidating its budget and has satisfied the EU's deficit reduction targets even more rapidly than planned."
While highlighting the fact that Austria is well on its way to achieving a zero deficit, Fekter underlined the need for the Government to "stay the course" with its budget policy, to ensure that Austria remains "the great business location it has become."