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Hungary Rejects OECD Tax Advice

By Lorys Charalambous,, Cyprus

29 January 2014

Hungary's Minister of Economic Strategy has dismissed OECD proposals relating to a number of taxes, saying that tax reform in the country had been completed and that only some "fine-tuning" may be necessary.

Zoltán Cséfalvay, who is also the Hungarian President of OECD's National Council, made the comments at a press conference on the new OECD Economic Survey of Hungary. He said that a proposed new property tax would adversely affect low-income owners, and was therefore not currently under consideration. Further, energy and environmental taxes were "not realistic," as existing taxes were already higher than the relevant OECD average.

Cséfalvay also rejected OECD proposals for inheritance and wealth taxes.

The minister explained that economic growth had revived during 2013, and that its basis had shifted from exports to investment and household consumption. He added that extra taxes in 2010 and 2011 had been direct levies that were subsequently replaced by consumption taxes, and that these played a key role in maintaining fiscal balance.

Cséfalvay also complained about "monopolies" in the energy sector, and said that the Government would establish a non-profit utility service.

TAGS: inheritance tax | environment | tax | Hungary | property tax | fiscal policy | energy | real-estate | Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) | environmental tax | tax reform

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