Draft finance law 2024: tax measures to improve sharing of tax burden (study)

The draft finance law 2024 is designed to beef up tax measures, better target high incomes and improve the sharing of the tax burden, a study conducted by expert economist Abdeljalil Bedoui shows.

The study, which focused on the 2023 draft budget, demonstrated the political, social and financial inefficiency of scattered and general measures.

The latter fueled anger and resentment among economic actors, instead of bringing advantage to the budget, and failed to achieve a major shift of resources to promote and underpin “the State’s self-reliance process,” Bedoui said as he presented the study recently.

The study, a critical review of the draft finance law for 2024, puts spotlight on a new approach which finds expression in the introduction of alternative mechanisms for funding subsidies.

This includes raising the tax on subsidy from 1% to 3 % and expanding it to tourist restaurants and cafés ( 2nd and third category) and coffree shops. This will edge up to 5% from 3% for nightclubs, nightclubs not belong
ing to tourism businesses, cabarets and bakeries, except for units solely making varieties of popular sweet pastry .

Additional mechanisms include the extension of the scope of this tax to hotels, bars and the production of soft drinks, beer and alcohol at a rate of 3% of the turnover, not including taxes. This in addition to the recovery of a part of subsidy expenditure by means of enlarging the scope of the tourist tax to all tourist establishments and other rentals (rooms, flats and villas) for specific periods of time with higher taxes for foreign tourists.

The draft finance also provides for taxes on dairy products, except for yoghurts. Taxes on travel tickets using CO2 emiting planes or ships will also be charged, as part of the carbon taxation.

There is a tendency to overhaul priorities, the study highlighted, with more interest lent to agriculture, mainly grain crops, and the issue of water and the funding of small- and medium-sized enterprises.

These measures, Bedoui said, are still fragmented an
d ineffective as a result of the lingering public finance crisis and the adoption of austerity policies, while keeping the same economic model.

Possible courses of action were explored and tapped into which, the study suggests, could contribute in an effective way to increasing public financial resources and national savings and thus to shoring up economic recovery and embracing an alternative model of development.

Source: Agence Tunis Afrique Presse




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