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Austria's Spindelegger Eyes FTT Start In 2016

by Ulrika Lomas, Tax-News.com, Brussels

24 February 2014


Austria's Deputy Vice Chancellor and Finance Minister Michael Spindelegger has made clear that a European Union (EU) financial transactions tax (FTT) will not materialize until 2016 at the very earliest.

Consequently, Austria's State Budgets for 2014 and 2015 will reflect the delays and will not make provision for revenue to flow from the levy, he said.

While insisting that definite progress was made during the latest round of talks between the Finance Ministers of the 11 participating European Union member states, Spindelegger nevertheless emphasized that no major breakthrough was achieved in Brussels.

The majority of participants agreed that the EU FTT should be introduced progressively, i.e. step by step, Spindelegger noted, stressing that such a solution was completely "acceptable" and constituted a start.

However, Spindelegger warned that Austria would not be content with a small stock market sales tax as the final package. Austria is seeking an EU FTT imposed on shares, bonds, and derivatives, he emphasized. Whether or not EUR500m (USD686m) will ultimately flow to the Austrian budget from the tax, as initially anticipated, very much depends on the results, he ended.

An EU 11 FTT first draft is expected in March.

TAGS: Finance | Budgets | tax | sales tax | budget | tobin tax | Austria | European Union (EU) | Europe

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