Austria banking news: When tax scheming comes home

Die Presse reports on an ongoing tax-related conflict within the Austrian banking sector.

Raffeisen is the largest financial group in Austria; over 43% of Austrians have an account with one of its independent local branches or “Raffeisenkassen”.

However, few of these branches are paying a banking tax which was introduced following the financial crisis in 2011, leading to “outrage” among Raffeisen’s competitors. They claim Raffeisen lobbied for banks with under 1 billion euros in assets to be exempted from the tax, which raises 640 million euros a year from the sector as a whole. 468 out of Raffeisen’s 509 independent branches fall below the 1 billion threshold.

Now the bosses of the bank’s largest competitors have banded together to ask the Austrian government to change the rules, saying “everyone must pay”. If the government does not agree, they threaten to sue.

The article (in German) is here, translation with some help from google.

Austria ranks 18th on the Financial Secrecy Index, has a history of banking secrecy and facilitating foreign tax evasion and for 20 years persistently lobbied against EU tax transparency measures.

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One thought on “Austria banking news: When tax scheming comes home

  1. Pingback: Austria banking news: When tax scheming comes home | Investors Europe Interns

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