Three month tax relief for diaspora

first_imgA three-month extension of the deadline for Greeks abroad – including Greeks in Australia – for the submission of documents to avoid double taxation has been approved by the Greek Ministry of Finance, following strong reaction by the diaspora. For the 2012 financial year, the deadline for submission of supporting documents is extended until March 29, 2013, instead of December 31, 2012, that was stipulated in the initial decision of the Ministry of Finance of the mother country. With the controversial law 3943/2011 passed by the Greek parliament last year, the Ministry of Finance compels all Greeks – who declare residence abroad and are subject to taxation only on their income arising in Greece – to file a tax return in the Directorate of Financial Services for Greeks Abroad (Διεύθυνση Οικονομικών Υπηρεσιών Εξωτερικου- ΔΟΥ) for residents abroad, together with evidence of permanent resident status abroad and taxation of the income of every Greek, permanent resident in Australia, by the Australian Taxation Office. Bureaucratic procedures introduced by the controversial decision of the Ministry of Finance will cost a lot of money and heartache to Greeks abroad – and potentially jeopardise Australia’s relationship with Greece – while there is a simpler and cheaper way of obtaining and submitting documents to the Directorate of Financial Services for non-residents. This solution is supported by the Greek Embassy in Canberra. Early this week, diplomatic circles in Athens told Neos Kosmos that Athens treats Greeks of Australia as third-class citizens. “Australia is not a third world country,” they said. “If there is a political will, Athens can immediately begin negotiations with Australia for signing a mutual agreement to avoid double taxation that would put an end to the issue.” The same circles added that “the three-month extension of the deadline for submission of supporting documents is a short term solution. The permanent solution is a Double Tax Avoidance Agreement signed by Australia and Greece, as Greece has done with many other countries.” The Greek community of Australia urges Greece’s Government to immediately engage in negotiations with the Australian Government for the signing of a mutual agreement which will prevent double taxation, instead of wasting time, energy and money for the Reconstruction of World Council of Hellenes Abroad. Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagramlast_img

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