FinMin Bolos: No increases in taxes and duties and budget deficit round 5pct in 2024

Finance Minister Marcel Bolos said on Monday, in regards with the draft state budget, that there will be no tax and fee increases for 2024, mentioning that the deficit will be “around 5%.”

Bolos presented at the National Liberal Party (PNL) leadership meeting the measures to combat tax evasion, saying that they will be very tough for those who commit criminal acts in the VAT area, mentioning, in this sense, an increase in punishments for economic-financial crimes, particularly in the VAT area, according to the EU model.

He added that another measure will be related to the use of IT systems.

“As we know, from January 1, 2024, the electronic invoice comes into force for all business, July 1 is the date for the pre-filled VAT return, we will come up with measures in the Government and then the reporting of accounting information in the 406 statement, for those who know, from July 1 there will be an earlier deadline. All these things must pay off in the fight against tax evasion. And three: the separation of the prerogatives of the bodies empowered by law, so that the large-scale evasion is dealt with by the relevant bodies that Romania has and, of course, then the cases that are smaller should remain with the current mechanisms. All these are steps to have a better basis for revenue,” said Marcel Bolos.

According to him, the European Commission made studies on tax evasion in Romania which showed that there is a VAT gap of 9 billion euros, 40% of which comes from intra-Community purchases. “From this point of view, our decisions will be thought through and you will see them in the ‘train’ ordinance. Let’s see the draft state budget law and the packages of measures that accompany the draft state budget law so that we have the basis for the revenues that we have taken into account (…) There are several measures that will lead to improved revenues,” Bolos said.

Asked about the increase in excise duties on fuel, the minister explained that there will not be an increase, but an update, to the consumption price index, according to the law in force.

On the minimum wage increase, Bolos said it was the coalition’s decision. “You can’t go with minimum wage increases one after another. We had an increase in October to 3,300 lei, we have to leave it alone so as not to upset the business environment,” the minister added.

He also said that the GDP is estimated to grow from 1,591 billion lei to 1,733.8 billion lei in 2024.

“We have 27% tax revenue of the GDP and we have a public expenditure system that is not out of line with the European average. We are on a moderate public expenditure system, until we get to adjust this percentage there is a long way. What is certain is that for the year 2024 there will be no increase in taxes and duties. The deficit will be around 5%,” minister Bolos added.