Greek Farmers Ready to Rally Protesting Tax and Security Fund Reforms

agrotiko-mplokoGreek farmers and stockbreeders will demonstrate massively against the new taxes imposed on them, threatening that they may even block national highways before Christmas.

The PanHellenic Coordinating Committee of Farmers’ Blocs convened in Larissa on Sunday and decided to start protest rallies and demonstrations that will culminate in blocking with their tractors national highways and main thoroughfares across Greece during the Christmas season.

Farmers and ranchers oppose the new heavy taxes and recessionary reforms on pension funds, imposed by the Greek state as requirements of the third bailout program.

Representatives of 37 prefectures and over 250 representatives of various farmer federations and committees across Greece participated in the meeting.

On Monday, union representatives will start visiting towns, villages and rural communities and hold meetings to inform farmers and stockbreeders on the new recessionary measures that threaten their incomes.

Starting at the end of October, protesters will organize protest rallies in all major towns and cities that will last through November. In early December, a new PanHellenic meeting will be held to decide further protest actions, including roadblocks before the Christmas season.

Specifically, stockbreeders and farmers are reacting to the new measures that include:

The taxation of farmers’ income at the rate of 26 percent and with an advance payment of 100 percent of the tax for the next year.
The increase of value added tax on agricultural tools and supplies to 23 percent.
Abolition of the return of the Special Tax on agricultural fuel and the sharp increase in the price of electrical power for farms.
The single property tax (ENFIA) for houses, warehouses, stables and farm plots.
The tripling of contributions to the Farmers’ Security Fund (OGA).