The government's proposals to introduce a special levy on banks and regulated companies in strategic industries as well as some measures to combat tax evasion were not completely supported at the tripartite negotiations on June 25 as employer representatives voiced objections, the SITA newswire wrote.
"Basically, the social partners have agreed on further legislative action and in some cases agreed with comments, elsewhere without comment, except for three draft bills," Labour Minister Ján Richter told the SITA newswire, summarising the outcome of the talks of the tripartite group.
According to the Secretary of the Republican Association of Employers (RÚZ), Martin Hošták, the planned bank levy, the special levy to be paid by regulated entities and some measures to eliminate value added tax (VAT) evasion, may in the long term damage the Slovak economy. "These measures will reduce economic activity of businesses operating in Slovakia," Hošták opined. Minister Richter said they would further discuss the specific comments of the employers regarding an amendment to the VAT law.
The President of the Association of Employers' Federations (AZZZ), Rastislav Machunka, also raised AZZZ’s reservations concerning some measures that the government of Robert Fico plans to introduce. In his opinion, the special levy for regulated entities is selective.
Representatives of employees agree with the planned steps of the government. "We accept those things that have been proposed because we agree with consolidation of public finances and the burden of it should be carried by those who have more opportunity to pay, and this is what is happening today," stated Emil Machyna, the president of the KOVO metalworkers union.
The cabinet of Prime Minister Robert Fico has already discussed and approved several of the measures which were discussed by social partners at the Economic and Social Council. The cabinet approved a draft amendment to the VAT law that should limit possibilities for tax evasion. The cabinet approved a special levy for regulated businesses and widening the base for the levy on banks. The increase in the special levy on banks is already under discussion in the current session of parliament.
Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
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26. Jun 2012 at 10:00