Cabinet on Wednesday approved a bill that will oblige everyone with an income to submit tax returns every year, even if they make less than €19,500 a year which is the tax-free threshold.
Finance Minister Harris Georgiades told reporters the bill aims to improve the state’s tax collection capabilities.
A second provision will require nearly all companies which provides goods or services to accept payment by credit cards. This will encourage electronic payments and reinforce tax checks, he said.
Moreover, under the new bill failure to pay income tax will be considered a criminal offence — putting it on a par with failure to pay VAT.
Tax returns are filed online. Georgiades said this took only a few minutes and would give the state a comprehensive picture of the tax base and reveal those who avoid paying their taxes.
The bill is subject to the approval of the House of Representatives.