Poland approves new tax on banks
PR dla Zagranicy
Poland’s lower house of parliament on Friday approved a new tax that will see banks and some financial institutions paying an annual levy of 0.44 percent on their assets.
The bill on the tax for banks, insurance companies and loan firms must now be signed into law by the president. It is expected to come into force in February.
The tax was voted through by parliament after MPs accepted a range of amendments proposed by the Senate, the upper house.
New taxes on both banks and hypermarkets were key pledges by the conservative Law and Justice (PiS) party ahead of its landslide victory in the country’s October general elections.
The taxes are designed to help the PiS government deliver on a swathe of generous spending promises.
Critics have argued that the new tax will hit banks’ clients. But PiS government ministers have countered that competition in the banking sector means financial institutions would be reluctant to pass the tax onto their customers.
Banks will pay the new tax on assets of over PLN 4 billion. For insurers the threshold will be PLN 2 billion, and for loan companies it will be PLN 200 million.
During an earlier stage of debate on the legislation, Development Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said: “Bank taxes have already been introduced in a majority of EU countries, and many other countries around the world. In this sense we are only doing the same as other countries.” (pk)