Tax Law Amendments Approved on First Reading

Tax Law Amendments Approved on First Reading

November 6 (BTA) - The National Assembly on Wednesday
granted first-reading approval for government-sponsored
amendments to the Corporate Income Tax Act by a vote of 104-81,
with 3 abstentions. If adopted conclusively, the amendments will
 also entail changes to other tax laws, including the Value
Added Tax Act, the Excise Duties and Tax Warehouses Act, and the
 Local Taxes and Fees Act.

BSP for Bulgaria and the Movement for Rights and Freedoms (MRF)
objected to this approach and said they will not support the

Budget Committee Chair Menda Stoyanova (of the ruling GERB) said
 that 90 per cent of the changes are aimed to transpose six EU
directives into Bulgarian law. There are also some provisions
intended to reduce the administrative burden on taxpayers, and a
 few others which are designed to curb tax evasion.

Roumen Gechev (BSP for Bulgaria) said his parliamentary group is
 not opposed to the EU directives, but it does not want them to
be lumped together with other amendments to seven laws which are
 important for the public revenues and will affect a number of
companies. Gechev said the Finance Ministry has not provided an
assessment of the impact of the proposed changes.

He went on to note that the proposed bill suggests zero excise
duty on goods and services provided to troops of other NATO
member countries in Bulgaria. He questioned the fairness of
requiring Bulgarian hospitals to pay excise duty on the fuel
they buy while exempting "the US bases in Bulgaria" from that
same obligation.

Filip Popov (BSP for Bulgaria) said the power-holders obviously
want to revamp the whole revenue side of the state budget scheme
 through a single law. "In the dark, directly and indirectly,
they are deciding how to rip off the Bulgarian citizens," he

Yordan Tsonev (MRF) accused the ruling majority of reducing the
parliamentary debate to mere statements of whether they support
the changes or not. "You don't care about arguments, so we will
not give you any arguments," Tsonev said. He warned that the
amendments will increase the tax burden on farmers.

The Corporate Income Tax Act amendments introduce new taxation
rules in cases when company assets or services are transferred
from Bulgaria to a part of the same company located abroad.

Proposed changes to the transitional and final provisions of
this law will indirectly amend the Income Taxes on Natural
Persons Act. The idea is to minimize the administrative
formalities associated with tax rebates for persons with reduced
 working capacity, children with disabilities and people buying
pensionable service time. MY/VE


Source: Sofia