Controversial Bill Passed by Parliament Again
Parliament today passed a bill that will force companies to declare any financial transaction of more than 1,000 euros. A similar bill was passed at the end of last year, only for President Toomas Hendrik Ilves to veto it.
Ilves said in December that there is no evidence the proposed restriction on business freedom would significantly crack down on tax evasion, as hoped by Finance Minister Jürgen Ligi, who is spearheading the bill.
IRL, now in opposition, said in a press release today that the additional cost to businesses of having to report each such sale or purchase would be at least 80 million euros annually. The faction said the government is only expecting an additional tax income of 30 million euros per year.
Sven Sester, the then-head of the Finance Committee and an IRL MP, said in December that although the bill will be passed, it will have to be reviewed in 2014 as a number of issues are yet to be tackled.
Parliament is currently debating a second idea to tackle tax fraud, which would eliminate tax deductions on company cars used for private purposes. VAT fraud alone is estimated to be worth 220 million euros each year.