Will Creditors Approve Government’s Plan of Incentives for Making Credit Card Purchases?



debit-or-credit-cardAccording to sources, there is a plan in the making to drive Greeks to use their credit cards to make purchases. The government has a 12 point plan as a part of a long-awaited bill with incentives to increase Greece’s credit card usage.

It is interesting to note that the government is encouraging people using their credit cards and debit cards more because many individuals do not use bank, debit or credit cards for fear that undeclared or “black” income will be able to be tracked and discovered by the Greek State.

The proposed bill has been submitted to Greece’s creditors but has yet to get approval. Let’s take a look at the 12 highlighted points of the bill, according to ekathimerini.com.

1. Taxpayers might qualify for a tax-free threshold of 1,900-2,100 euros depending on how much their payments by card come to as a percentage of all spending.

2. Medical expenses paid with cards qualify for a tax discount.

3. Additional tax-free amount for those who use cards for more than 80 percent of their total spending.

4. Taxpayers who spend over a certain amount using cards or other electronic means — which will depend on income — will also receive tickets for lottery-type draws (e.g. for every extra 1,000 euros they will get one ticket).

5. Permanent residents of Aegean islands that have lost the 30 percent value-added tax discount will get an additional tax-free amount for the amount spent using cards on those islands.

6. Some categories of taxpayers, such as over-65s and those in remote parts of the country, will be exempted from the obligation to pay via cards.

7. Compulsory acceptance of card payment by all professionals, enforced gradually based on location and profession.

8. Further reduction to limits on all cash transactions.

9. Online supply of data to the Finance Ministry by payment service providers and receiving banks active in Greece.

10. Extra incentives to promote online payments, such as lotteries with state properties up for grabs, money return for transactions in specific professional categories etc.

11. Compulsory salary payment via banks for annual salaries over 500 euros.

12. Online connection of tills with the Finance Ministry for the electronic transfer of all tax-related data in wholesale and retail transactions.