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New finance tax to hit banking industry

Published måndag 7 november 2016 kl 15.17
Finance Minister: the financial sector has a tax advantage
(2:12 min)
Finance Minister Magdalena Andersson.
Finance Minister Magdalena Andersson. Credit: Janerik Henriksson/TT

Finance Minister Magdalena Andersson today presented plans to increase taxes on banks and financial companies to raise billions for welfare services.

"The fact is that the financial sector has a tax advantage in that they do not pay VAT. Here we propose to remove a portion of the tax benefit. We also see that the big banks made profits of SEK 80 billion after tax, so here there is room to participate and contribute to the common welfare, Finance Minister Magdalena Andersson tells Swedish Radio News.

According to the proposals contained in the report, "Tax on the financial sector", banks, insurance companies and other corporations within the financial sector will pay higher taxes as of next year. Starting January 1, 2017, these institutions will for instance be blocked from making tax deductions on so-called subordinated loans.

The proposal aims to raise SEK 7 billion a year extra in tax revenue.

The Swedish Bankers' Association says it's concerned about the new financial sector tax proposed by the government.

"In practice, we are talking about a tax penalty on employees in the financial sector. An additional payroll tax of 15 percent. It's a lot, so in total, we estimate that up to 16,000 jobs could disappear across the financial sector," says Hans Lindberg, president of the Banking Association to Swedish Radio News.

How the final proposal on a financial tax will look like remains to be seen, as it now goes out for consultation before being put to parliament. But Magdalena Andersson has high hopes that a tax on the financial sector will go through in parliament in the current term.

"The centre-right Alliance had an increase in tax on the financial sector in its own proposals, and some of the parties also had concrete proposals in their budget propositions. So I think that such a tax will get broad support in parliament," Finance Minister Magdalena Andersson said to Swedish Radio News.

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