Greece: New Cruising Tax - Latest updates
Published: 2014-06-01 10:00:00
For detailed information about this tax, as well as a translation of the new law and lastest updates see http://cruising.org.uk/news/greektax. This web page is kept up to date as material comes in from the Greek Ministry of Finance who have ordered this tax.
An Overview of the New Greek Tax for Yachts
Why the tax?
The aims of the tax are to 'strengthen public revenue' and to 'correspond to the type and charges made by neighbouring countries, but not to act as a disincentive to tourists.'
Who will be taxed?
Leisure boats over 7m LOA afloat in Greek waters.
Boats stored ashore do not have to produce receipts for this tax – they are treated as if they were not in Greek waters.
This tax applies to all boats including non-EU boats.
When will the tax start being collected?
Whilst the tax is effective as of 1 Jan 2014, it will not be collected until a new on-line tax collection sytem - "TAXIS" - is in operation, and agents appointed to collect this tax have been trained. The system should be working by May, however no cruisers have reported any mention of this tax yet. No penalties will arise before this new deadline. Boats will not have to produce receipts for the tax until the collection system has been working for a period.
How do I pay?
Multiple methods of payment are being arranged: on-line; through port police, tax offices and agents; and possibly through banks. Cash, credit or debit cards can be used by most collecting methods.
What do I pay?
The LOA defined in your registration documents will be used in calculations, rounded up to the nearest tenth of a metre.
Boats of 12m and Less
These boats pay a single fee on arrival in Greece or on launching. This will permit them to cruise for the rest of that calendar year in Greek waters. There are three bands: 7.1m to 8m, €200; 8.1m to 10m, €300; and 10.1m to 12m, €400.
Boats 12.1m or More
The full rate of tax for these boats will very rarely have to be paid. For a full calendar year it is €(100 x LOA) - or €1,240 for a 12.4m boat. Two options exist to reduce this payment:
- Pay per month at €(10 x LOA) or €124 for 12.4m. This is recommended for boats spending less than seven months a year in the water. Seven months in the water (April to October) would then cost €868. It is not clear if it is possible to pay for 3 or 4 months ahead, or whether one payment each month will be needed.
- If the boat spends more than 11 months a year in Greek territory, (afloat or ashore) it pays 30% less than the full rate. That is the same as paying for 7 separate months (€868 for 12.4m) but more convenient and flexible. This may be a suitable option for full time live-aboards
Boats over 12m which try to evade paying this tax face a harsh penalty if caught – they have to pay twice the full annual rate due.
Owners and users are jointly and severally liable to pay the fee.
Vessels over 12m “permanently based in Greece” (criteria to be defined) may obtain a 30% discount from the annual fee.
Receipts for fees must be carried with ship's papers, and may be asked for at any time. The receipt is valid for the period pre-paid, and remains valid even if the boat leaves Greek waters and returns.
There are no rebates for boats leaving Greek waters, whether hauling out, or by going to another country.
The CA is seeking clarifications of the law, and concessions for categories of sailors most affected. The need for concessions for boats currently afloat in Greece is already recognised, and the CA have been told that no penalties will be payable until the collection system is working smoothly. They have also been told that regulations for leisure boats are being revised. Review http://cruising.org.uk/news/greektax for updates.
It is possible that implementation of this tax will lead to questions about how much time you, personally, spend in Greece. People planning to spend more than 182 days per 365 days in Greece are, by EU definition, tax residents of Greece. We strongly recommend that potential Greek tax residents review the following effects:
a) the need to make tax returns
b) the need to prove you are importing money into a Greek bank account
c) the fact that valuable assets (such as a boat) are taxable above certain thresholds.