Finance Minister Promises Freeze on Property Tax

Taxes are high on the agenda ahead of this September’s election, and now Sweden’s Finance Minister has promised to freeze property taxes until 2008.

Finance Minister Pär Nuder wrote in a column on Tuesday that Sweden will freeze its property tax at current levels for the next few years. In the column Nuder also he repeated a promise to review the whole tax system.

Nuder’s comments, in an article in daily Dagens Nyheter, came a day after Sweden recorded 5.5 percent year-on-year growth in the second quarter, the fastest for six years.

The news buoyed the Social Democratic government ahead of September 17th elections.

Nuder said the freeze on the property tax meant the government would continue to take in more than US $ 4billion a year from the levy.

According to Nuder this means that the new tax valuations will not lead to higher property taxes for anyone for the coming years.

A rise in property prices has meant that valuations for houses for tax purposes have also gone up, something which has worried property owners.

Nuder reiterated that the government intended to review the whole tax system in order to make sure it could sustain necessary levels of welfare spending.

He also said that a new, modern system of financing housing would be introduced from 2008, but He gave no further details.

Alliance Wants to Get Rid of Tax

Nuders promise to freeze property taxes over the next few years comes less than a month after the right-of-centre opposition Alliance promised to do the same thing if they win this Septembers elections. The Alliance has also said that after freezing the tax for a few years, they would get rid of it all together.

Current polls show that the Social Democratic Government and its parliamentary allies, the Left and Green parties, are neck to neck with the center-right opposition, which running a joint campaign under the ”Alliance for Sweden.”

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