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Maltese Income Tax Cut Shelved


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Dec 29, 2008
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The Maltese government has confirmed that it is to postpone proposed alterations to the top income tax rate in Malta, citing the need for fiscal retrenchment to achieve a deficit below the Maastricht Criterion of 3% of GDP.

The Nationalist Party government has been criticized for the decision, the income tax cut pledge being a cornerstone in its election manifesto. It was proposed that taxpayers earning less than EUR60,000, who are currently subject to a rate of 35%, would pay a 25% rate.

Responding to the criticism, in comments in a Radio 101 broadcast, Maltese Prime Minister, Lawrence Gonzi explained that it is in the nation's interest to defer the plans as part of ongoing fiscal consolidation efforts. He insisted the government had already implemented a number of tax reductions in the last few years, in particular cuts to company tax bills to improve Malta’s attractiveness as an International Finance Center.

Asked when the tax cut might be introduced, Gonzi declined to give a definite timeframe, stating: “When the country can take the next step, we will then take it.”


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