New Government Measures Against COVID-19 and its Consequences in Greece
On Saturday 7 November 2020, the Greek Government announced a three-week national lockdown after a sharp increase in the COVID-19 infection rate. Employment and tax measures have been implemented to cushion the financial impact on companies.
Financial support of EUR 3.3 billion will be provided to workers and businesses affected by the special measures, which will see non-essential retail, dining, and entertainment closed and restrictions placed on citizens’ movements.
Compulsory teleworking has been introduced for 50% of personnel.
Employees’ working schedules should be adapted and reformulated to avoid overcrowding in the workplace.
Employees of affected businesses may be suspended by their employers and receive state monetary aid, while their social security contributions will be totally covered by the state. The aid will amount to EUR 800 for those in employment up to 4 November 2020 and suspended for the month of November.
We support you in correctly implementing the government measures and tax relief during the lockdown. Dimitrios Leventakis, Managing Director, ECOVIS HELLAS L.T.D., Athens, Greece
Tax and Other Measures
Suspension of VAT payment for November, or payment of due debts in 12 instalments with zero interest.
Suspension of tax and social security contribution payment instalments for the month of November for the businesses suspended by state.
Expansion of the Returnable Deposit Scheme, a collateral fund for small and medium-sized enterprises.
Suspension of cheque payments.
Reduction of rent up to 40% for affected businesses and for private tenants whose employment contracts have been suspended. In return, property owners who lease their properties are entitled to receive half of their rent loss immediately from the state.
How much money small and medium-sized companies affected by the corona pandemic will receive from the state
A) Businesses suspended by the state, regardless of their turnover, will receive a minimum of EUR 2,000 economic support.
B) For businesses seriously affected by the spread of COVID-19 based on their Activity Code number as of 5 November 2020 which fulfil the criteria prescribed in Ministerial Decision nos.GDOY (ΓΔΟΥ) 281/2020 and GDOY (ΓΔΟΥ) 282/2020 and with a decrease in turnover of 20% in relation to the reference turnover, which should amount to more than EUR 300, the minimum economic support they will receive will amount to:
B.1. EUR 2,000 for businesses with no employees under contract on 1 September 2020.
B.2. EUR 4,000 for businesses with 1 to 5 employees under contract on 1 September 2020.
B.3. EUR 8,000 for businesses with 6 to 20 employees under contract on 1 September 2020.
B.4. EUR 15,000 for businesses with 21 to 50 employees under contract on 1 September 2020.
B.5. EUR 30,000 for businesses with at least 51 employees under contract on 1 September 2020.
B.6. For businesses not covered by any of the above, the minimum economic support they will receive will amount to EUR 1,000.
For businesses suspended by the state and businesses seriously affected by the coronavirus pandemic, 50% of the returnable deposit will be seen as a government subsidy and must not be returned to the state.
Turkey is struggling with massive tax revenue shortfalls. The government has taken measures to stabilise the situation. So taxes on consumer goods are being increased and measures are being taken to present Turkey as an attractive market for the post-pandemic period.
Turkey has faced serious economic problems over the last few years. These include depreciation of the Turkish lira against the US dollar and a high rate of inflation. The situation is forcing the government to make serious decisions affecting the Turkish economy. On the one hand there are effforts to increase tax revenues. But on the other hand, the focus is on new opportunities that will arise after the pandemic. The country’s location and its low labour costs can make it an attractive market after the pandemic.
Turkey is gearing up for the time after the pandemic as an attractive location for investments. Uğur Kaan Bora, Assistant Auditor, ECOVIS DIPLOMAT DENETIM VE YMM A.S, Izmir, Turkey
The Most Important Tax Changes
Increase in Special Consumption Tax (SCT) on cars. The minimum SCT basis has increased from TRY 70,000 to TRY 85,000. The tax ratios based on engine size have increased from 60% to 80%, 100% to 130%, 110% to 150% and 130% to 220%. This means, for example, a ratio of 220% for cars whose engine size exceeds 2000 cm³, with no base limit.
The Banking and Insurance Transactions Tax on foreign exchange and gold purchases, which was increased to 1% last May, has been reduced to 0.2%.
The VAT rate for education and training services, which is currently 8%, has been reduced to 1%.
The goverment also plans to restructure some tax debts, including debts to the Ministry of Finance, customs tax debts, debts to social insurance institutions and debts to the municipality. The proposal being discussed in parliment is expected to become law shortly say the Ecovis experts.
Preparing for Brexit: Our Guide Shows What Companies Should Do
From 1 January 2021, new rules will apply for companies in the UK as a result of Brexit. To familiarise companies with these new rules, Ecovis UK has developed the business guide “Preparing for Brexit”. The guide covers specific information about changes that will impact all businesses – from importing/exporting goods and direct taxation, through to the impact on your workforce.
With Brexit now inevitable, companies have to know the new rules. Our guide provides companies with information about the most important regulations. Gerry Collins, Managing Partner, ECOVIS Wingrave Yeats, London, UK
On 31 January 2020 the UK left the EU. There is a transition period until the end of 2020, while the UK and EU negotiate additional arrangements. Even if these are still unclear, one thing is certain: the changes will extend to all areas of cooperation.
The subjects covered in the “Preparing for Brexit” guide include:
Trading in the UK post Brexit
Customs and VAT
Legal matters concerning setting up a UK legal entity