The premier announced that the government will make an analysis at the end of the year and, if it will notice that ANAF “still does not work,” measures will be taken.
Premier Victor Ponta said that he informed, in the latest meeting, the USL members which are not part of the government that not all targets can be met last year, respectively both the decrease of the social contributions (CAS) and the increase of wages, pensions and cofinancing. “It simply does not work, mathematics does not obey TV speeches,” Ponta said, quoted by Mediafax. Asked if, in these conditions, the attitude of PNL leader Crin Antonescu regarding the possibility of increasing the flat tax is populist, the premier answered that he is not making such appreciations and eventually it is important how the government operates.
On the other hand, Ponta announced that the government will make an analysis at the end of the year and, if it finds out that the National Agency of Fiscal Administration (ANAF) “still does not work,” measures will be taken.
Governmental counselor Mirel Palada announced that Friday, in a cabinet meeting, the premier voiced his concern over the activity of ANAF which is reflected in the collection under targets of incomes to the budget and demanded the improvement of the performance of the institution, so that until the end of the year the collection rate provided at the beginning of the year.
Deputy PM Liviu Dragnea, in his turn, says that the Ministry of Finance must present in a relatively short time interval the reasons why incomes to the state budget, which fall within the responsibility of ANAF, diminished at a time when Romania registers economic growth and the number of employees increased. Dragnea explained that, for local authorities, a reallocation of European funds will be operated from the Operational Programmes of Transport and Environment, amounting to EUR 350 M, for development projects such as works that began to schools and county roads.
Before these statements, Ponta said that it was him who asked Finance minister Daniel Chitoiu (PNL) various scenarios for the increase of incomes to the state budget (lowering the VAT and the CAS) discussed by the USL, which later sparked the discontentment of liberals. “First I talked with the president of ANAF, a liberal whom I trust, who told me that this year we have a collection rate smaller than predicted, then I discussed with the minister of Finance, another liberal whom I appreciate, about how we will think for next year, because speaking on TV about tax reductions is the easiest thing when you have no responsibility. When you are minister of Finance, chief of ANAF, prime minister you must also do things, not just tell tales on TV,” Ponta stated.
Asked if he refers to Crin Antonescu in the statement about people without responsibilities who demand tax cuts on TV, as he is known to oppose the flat tax increase, Ponta strongly denied. He added that he expects the minister of Finance to present the conclusions in the government and then in USL, or the other way around. Asked if a flat tax increase is envisaged for next year, the premier gave a negative answer.
Increasing the flat tax, under fire
PSD senator Mircea Geoana said yesterday, in a show called ’20 Years After’ on Pro TV that the flat tax will certainly stay at the same level in 2014, because there is no political will exists, but “this is a primitive form of fiscal policy,” he added. The PSD senator mentioned that he demanded explanations with regard to a possible modification of the flat tax rate, discussed by the USL, and the answer is that alternate scenarios were presented for the budget of 2014. “I tell it from the source, in the zone of the Ministry of Finance, where all calculations are made (…) that now some alternate formulas are naturally sought, diverse formulas that will secure incomes for the budget of next year,” Geoana added.
Former premier Emil Boc believes that PM Ponta starts paying for the irresponsible policy that cut money from investments, as the “hilarious proposal of raising the flat tax” will have as effect “the clinical death of the business environment.”