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Tuesday, 5 March 2019

Egypt’s taxpayers concerned over harsh penalties in draft law on tax procedures

EXCLUSIVE- FinMin to ease tax violation penalties under draft tax procedures law: The Finance Ministry has agreed to amend the draft law on new unified tax procedures amid concerns from taxpayers over harsh violation penalties, a government source tells Enterprise. The ministry will likely scrap several clauses, and replace them with a single stipulation that would make fines the default method of penalizing non-compliant taxpayers. The stipulation would hand prison sentences of 2-5 years only in incidents of deliberate tax avoidance. The initial draft, which is up on the ministry’s website until Thursday to invite public discourse, had loosely phrased articles stipulating 3-5 years of prison time and fines of up to EGP 50k. There were also other reservations from the community about the Tax Authority’s (TA) increased power to investigate tax filings, which some see as an infringement on company privacy.

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