Josef hírek

2012.11.24. 22:02

EC infringement procedures against Hungary enter new phase

Brussels, November 21 (MTI) - The European Commission on Wednesday sent reasoned opinions to Hungary asking the country to amend legislation on special taxes applied to the retail and the telecommunication sectors and to end restrictions on luncheon voucher issuers.

Brussels, November 21 (MTI) - The European Commission on Wednesday sent reasoned opinions to Hungary asking the country to amend legislation on special taxes applied to the retail and the telecommunication sectors and to end restrictions on luncheon voucher issuers.

These infringement procedures against Hungary have now entered their second phase, the Commission said.

 

The EC said it considered Hungary s special taxes to be discriminatory, as they fall disproportionately on non-Hungarian operators.

 

"Hungary imposes progressively increasing tax rates on all retail companies and on all telecommunication companies according to their annual turnover. Due to the design of these tax rates and the structure of the two markets, domestic companies are in practice given preferential treatment and the taxes are mainly borne by foreign-owned companies," the EC said.

 

Hungary is requested to change its legislation within two months to bring it in line with EU law. Failing this, the European Commission may refer the cases to the EU s Court of Justice.

 

The EC has also decided to take action to ensure the freedom of establishment and freedom to provide services of issuers of luncheon, leisure and holiday vouchers in Hungary. It asked Hungary to put an end to unjustified and disproportionate restrictions.

 

The economy ministry said in a statement sent to MTI on Wednesday that the EC was pushing at an open door, when it asked the Hungarian government to eliminate crisis taxes levied on certain sectors, including retail and telecoms. The government had decided to eliminate these taxes as of January 1, 2013, regardless of the EC s request. At the same time, Hungary is still convinced that the taxes were in complete congruence with EU law, the statement said.

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