Spiegel: Tax Fraud of German Auto Companies in Greece



car salesAccording to a recent “Der Spiegel” article, German auto companies Mercedes-Benz, BMW and Opel are being investigated by Greek tax authorities as the latest suspects of fraud.

The extremely low clearing prices at which German companies deliver their vehicles to distributors in Greece raised suspicions. This price is the basis for a series of taxes and the lower the price, the lower the revenue of the Greek State from VAT, registration tax and luxury tax.

Theodoros Floratos, head of the Financial and Economic Crime Unit (SDOE), reported to Der Spiegel: “We are investigating a number of international auto companies for possible tax offenses.”

Mercedes-Benz and BMW confirm that transfer prices are based on international tax standards and comply with the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) rules and European law.

According to the article, low transfer prices are due to the collapse of the Greek car market. Cars were delivered with favorable prices so that Greek dealers could attract potential customers with a high discount.