Austria' Pröll: Bank Tax Possible Under Strict Conditions
Tuesday, February 23, 2010
Austria’s Finance Minister Josef Pröll has confirmed that the introduction
of a bank tax in Austria may now be possible, albeit under strict conditions.
At the forthcoming “banking summit” in the Chancellery, Austria’s
Chancellor Werner Faymann is to put forward his proposals for a bank tax, notably
a levy imposed on the balance and thought to generate in the region of EUR500m
Although the Social Democratic Party of Austria (SPÖ) are determined to
introduce such a tax, Finance Minister Pröll of the Austrian People’s
Party (ÖVP) has revealed that he is only willing to consider the idea “under
strict conditions”. Indeed, according to Pröll, the fiscal burden
must neither be borne by savers nor borrowers, nor must the competitiveness
of Austria within Europe be affected. Concrete solutions must first be found,
Eager to highlight the need to “proceed carefully” with the banks,
Pröll nevertheless announced that, in a display of solidarity, the government,
banks and taxpayers all had a role to play in overcoming the country’s
debt. Taxpayers must also contribute to the recovery of the health and pensions
system, Pröll added.
Determined to consolidate the budget primarily through reform of administration
and to avoid tax rises, Pröll announced that the consolidation package
will be one that has never before been seen by Austria.