Austria's BZ÷ Presents Pact Against New Taxes
Tuesday, February 9, 2010
During a recent press conference held in Vienna, leader of the Alliance for the
Future of Austria (BZ÷), Josef Bucher, presented his pact against the introduction
of new taxes in Austria (Pakt gegen neue Steuern).
Bucher, the first party leader to sign the pact, urged representatives
of all other parliamentary parties to follow suit, and to sign the pact opposing
new levies as a pledge to the countryís electorate.
The preamble of the text states that the signatories of the pact guarantee
that no new taxes or additional fiscal charges will be introduced in order to
consolidate the countryís budget. Budgetary consolidation and reduction
of state debt is best achieved through state reform, it continues.
According to Bucher, given the fact that the Austrian government is eager to
postpone the countryís 2011 budget, risking penalties of over half a billion
euros from the European Union, the budget should be drafted immediately. Bucher
is convinced that the government plans to increase the tax burden in a bid to
make up the EUR6bn shortfall in the budget.
In his statement, Bucher emphasized the fact that the BZ÷ remains opposed
to tax rises, stating that this would prove fatal for both the population and
for the economy. Consequently, the BZ÷ is demanding that a debt brake rule
is inscribed in the countryís law, and that an immediate reform of administration
takes place, he added.
Given that Austria has a top rate of tax of 42%, there is currently no scope
for increasing taxes, Bucher concluded, especially given the lower rates of income tax on offer in neighbouring Switzerland.