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Property tax could bring in as much as Ft 110 bln a year

Hungary's government plans to introduce a property tax some time in the future, although it has revealed few details about the form it would take. On Friday, an undersecretary at the Finance Ministry resigned a day after suggesting on Thursday the tax would be levied on properties worth more than Ft 9.5 million, considered the average value of Hungarian homes. Residential property in Hungary has a combined value of about Ft 40,000 billion, according to Peter Heim, an economist for insurer Aegon. A tax on 0.5% of the value of those properties which are dearer than the average would bring in about Ft 110 billion, he said. Levying the tax on industrial properties could bring in Ft 150 billion, based on their combined value of roughly Ft 30,000 billion, he added. OTP Bank analyst Tamás Vojnits said a 0.5% tax on residential properties worth more than Ft 9.5 million would bring in Ft 100 billion – Ft 110 billion in 2007. In 2008-2009, the tax could bring in as much as Ft 135 billion – Ft 140 billion, he added. József Hegedűs of city research company Városkutatas said that if the 0.5% tax were levied on only those homes worth more than Ft 13 million, it would bring in an annual Ft 77 billion. A tax on residential properties over Ft 9 million would bring in Ft 113 billion a year, he said. (Mti-Eco)