Poland plans to tax big corporations to prop up healthcare system

2021-09-08 13:59 update: 2021-09-12, 15:03
PAP/Darek Delmanowicz
PAP/Darek Delmanowicz
The government is planning to introduce a 0.4 percent revenue tax on big corporations to offset a shortfall in funding for the NFZ, the national healthcare system, a deputy finance minister has said.

The new tax, which is a result of changes to the Polish New Deal, the government’s flagship economic reform programme, will help plug the PLN 4.5 billion (EUR 1 billion) gap the shortfall is expected to cause, Jan Sarnowski told a press briefing.
The Polish New Deal has drawn criticism from business lobbies due to increased premiums on healthcare that they claim could cripple Polish economic activity.

"The changes will result in a reduction of NFZ receipts by PLN 4.5 billion which will have to be covered by the budget," Sarnowski said.

"To offset that shortfall, we propose a tax modelled on regulations successfully introduced in the US several years ago," he went on to say. "But it will have to be a solution that concerns only the largest companies... not Polish small and medium-sized companies."

The new tax would also not affect companies with "actual investment expenses" and those afflicted by the pandemic, Sarnowski added.

He added that the exemptions will include the financial sector, new businesses in the first three years of operation, companies with a simple ownership structure and those paying the so-called 'Estonian CIT,' the recently-introduced measure that shifts tax collection to the moment profits are paid out to the owners.

The tax will, however, concern large businesses that post losses or whose income is below 1 percent of their operating revenue, according to Sarnowski.

The deputy minister said that the government expects a PLN 16.5 billion (EUR 3.65 billion) gain for taxpayers from the planned changes to the tax system.

"This PLN 16.5 billion will remain in taxpayers' pockets, in the economy,” he added. "It is almost PLN 3 billion more than the draft bill we sent for consultation." (PAP)