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Parliamentary questions
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10 March 2016
E-002112-16
Question for written answer E-002112-16
to the Commission
Rule 130
Tibor Szanyi (S&D)

 Subject:  Tax credits for growth in Hungary
 Answer in writing 

Since the Lux Leaks scandal, the EU has acknowledged that it is necessary to put an end to irresponsible tax competition by Member States, which places an intolerable tax burden on honest taxpayers and prevents the development of SMEs. The Commission and the EP have made serious efforts to combat tax evasion and tax fraud.

Last summer the Hungarian Parliament adopted legislation on tax credits for growth, which essentially stipulates that, if a firm which has been operating for at least three years and is registered in Hungary has increased its profits at least fivefold from one year to the next, the corporate tax payable on the increase need not be paid to the State treasury in full immediately but the firm is granted a deferral of payment and is required to pay the tax in the form of eight equal quarterly instalments over the two years following the year in question.

According to a report issued by the government last week, so far more than 70 firms have announced that they wish to take advantage of this concession. As a result, the payment of HUF 542 billion in tax was deferred. The Költségvetési Felelősségi Intézet Budapest (KFIB) (Budapest Budgetary Responsibility Institute) has calculated that, even taking as a basis the highest tax rate of 19%, an increase of at least HUF 2 853 billion in comparison with 2014 was needed in the corporate tax base in order to make this possible. Economic statistics suggest that it is highly implausible that such a sum could have derived from Hungarian businesses.

In view of the possibility that Hungary’s system of tax credits for growth was established for the purpose of tax optimisation by multinationals, will the Commission investigate this specific case?

Original language of question: HU 
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